For over a century, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) has been supporting those who have served and sacrificed for Australia and the families who have supported them. Its purpose is to support the wellbeing of veterans after their military careers, support that extends to their families.
DVA’s responsibilities range from policy and program development, to the provision of support and services through DVA’s face to face offices. As an end to end agency, DVA has broad oversight of veteran policies and programs, and a critical role in how these are implemented.
The Department provides access to health and other care services and facilitates early intervention, prevention and treatment for veterans. This includes services for mental health, veterans’ aged and community care, primary health care, social health, and rehabilitation.
DVA is at an important juncture and is transforming to meet the future needs of the veteran community. The department is ensuring that it serves all veterans and their families in a way that suits them and caters to their specific circumstances. Recent external reviews completed into compensation and rehabilitation for veterans and their families are shaping the future of the veteran care system. The Productivity Commission recently highlighted the critical need for DVA to adopt a wellbeing approach, combined with the use of actionable insights to ensure that the support system is veteran centric, needs based, wellness focused, evidence based, and financially sustainable.
DVA’s multi-year Transformation Program focuses on delivering real benefits for veterans and their families through numerous initiatives. The emphasis for Year One (Building the Foundations) was listening to staff, veterans, their families, healthcare and service providers to understand what veterans want and need, and what systems and processes are required to support the future of DVA. The imperative for Year Two (Design to Delivery) was implementing changes to the way DVA operates by introducing new technology to help staff focus on what really matters. This meant DVA could deliver benefits for veterans and their families by making access to services and support faster and easier. The department’s focus now is evolving the use of data to underpin policy development, service delivery and wellbeing outcomes.
The Priority Investment Approach Veterans (PIA-V) was initiated in 2017 under the remit of DVA’s Transformation Program, to implement a suite of proactive interventions. The project stemmed from the belief that there are veterans for whom early interventions could radically and positively change their lifetime trajectory, by improving lifetime outcomes, targeting service delivery and facilitating earlier self-management.
The current project supports the intent of transforming DVA into a department that embeds the use of data and analytics into its day to day functions. With a proactive approach to engaging veterans and monitoring service delivery performance, DVA is leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) within a rigorous actuarial framework to swiftly and accurately deploy the hundreds of predictive models underpinning PIA-V. The AI powered evidence based platform is steering DVA’s daily operations towards greater use of advanced analytics in decision making and adopting a thoroughly scrutinised approach capable of generating actionable insights. The sophisticated AI solution provides unprecedented and granular insights into the lifetime trajectory of each current and future veteran, assisting DVA to improve financial and social outcomes for clients at all stages of their wellbeing journey.