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SWEP Communique - Laryngectomy Consumables - pricing & quotes process update

21 July 2022

Dear Practitioners,

SWEP have been working closely with our Laryngectomy Consumables and Voice Aids suppliers to ensure we streamline the quote process for all stakeholders.  Laryngectomy suppliers have agreed to set pricing annually for our consumers.  

We are pleased to advise that practitioners will no longer need to source quotes from the suppliers and can now use the price lists and quote spreadsheets attached to our website https://swep.bhs.org.au/laryngectomy-consumables-program.php 

SWEP Communique - Additional VA&EP Funding

21 July 2022

Dear Practitioner,

We are pleased to advise you about additional funding we have received for the next two financial years. This funding is the result of a Whole of Government budget bid to continue to provide a range of supports for Victorians who do not meet the NDIS eligibility criteria, or where the NDIS cannot support a participant's outcomes with supports under the NDIS.

The additional funding will be targeted specifically for the consumer cohort seeking support through VA&EP who are aged under 65 years and ineligible for support through the NDIS.

SWEP Communique - Updated Information about the Proposed LCGP Operational Changes

23 June 2022

The current LCGP  operational policies will remain in place until further consultation work has been carried out. Given some of the feedback on the proposed change, and in line with the Department of Health, we will pause the implementation and further investigate any unintended consequences to ensure patient access to these garments is not adversely impacted.

Kind Regards
SWEP Leadership Team

SWEP Communique - Continence Program Catheter Packs

21 June 2022

Dear Practitioners

We are very pleased to advise that the Department of Health (DH) have approved changes to the available continence product list for consumers using catheters, to include inter-related Catheter Change Packs (Independence Australia Product code/SWEP Picklist code:  10000442).

Changes to the SWEP Operational Policies and inclusion of the Catheter Packs will be implemented from July 1, 2022 and these packs will be available to select for your consumer via the SWEP database.  

Consumer Survey 2022

20 June 2022

Annually we ask consumers, after they have received and used their Assistive Technology, to tell us how satisfied they are overall with their SWEP experience.

We have again exceeded our target of at least 90% satisfaction rate as set by the Department of Health.  Click here to see the full results.

SWEP Communique - LCGP Operational Changes July 1, 2022

7 June 2022

In the 2020-21FY, the Department of Health (DH) provided additional funding for a term of four years to the Lymphoedema Compression Garment Program (LCGP). The objective of the additional funding was to increase access to an approved range of subsidised garments and the number of consumers supported.

Review of demand trends since the injection of additional funds has identified that the program has had a far greater reach for this consumer cohort and enabled introduction of an increased range of garments.


Through feedback channels, processes implemented have appeared to unfairly disadvantage consumers in relation to the funding they receive, based on the number of garments they need per limb or number of limbs affected. This has created confusion for consumers and placed extra administrative burden for Practitioners, Suppliers and SWEP staff and does not align with the overarching subsidy limits by equipment category across other Victorian Aids & Equipment programs.

SWEP Communique - SWEP Closed for Staff Training Day

24 May 2022

The State-wide Equipment Program (SWEP) will be closed on Wednesday, 01 June, 2022 for a Staff Training Day and will re-open at 08.30 a.m. on Thursday, 02 June, 2022. 

An emergency breakdown service will be available during this period by phoning SWEP on 1300 747 937 and selecting option 1 - your call will then transfer to an operator who will be able to assist.

SWEP Communique - Lymphoedema Portal & Application Tips

11 May 2022

Dear Practitioner,

SWEP is aware that some Lymphoedema Practitioners are still adapting to the electronic format used to submit SWEP applications.  

Within the SWEP portal there are some shortcuts which make repeat applications quicker, and practitioners have identified some hints and tips that are perhaps unique to lymphoedema applications.

SWEP Communique - applications for low cost items

3 May 2022

Dear Practitioner,

Last year SWEP implemented a new process for the management of 'low-cost' (<$250) applications, in order to eliminate waiting times.  This was to help alleviate the administrative burden for AT Practitioners, administration staff and provide faster access to much need low cost equipment.

The process has been working well, however we have identified an issue associated with the management of these  applications when submitted for multiple items i.e the application includes a 'high-cost' (>$250) and 'low-cost' item (<$250), (e.g. an application for a lift/recliner chair and low back utility chair).

SWEP Communique - Consumer sign-off requirements on VA&EP documents

3 May 2022

Dear Suppliers and Practitioners,

Re:  Consumer sign-off requirements on VA&EP documents

Throughout the last two years, it has been necessary for SWEP to ease the requirements for Consumer Eligibility Form sign-off, Proof of Delivery (POD), Certificate of Completion (POC), Home and Vehicle Modification documentation.   This was due to the significant challenges for practitioners, suppliers and consumers to meet face to face, whilst various Covid-19 restrictions/lockdowns were in place.

SWEP Communique - Changes to The Standard for Lymphoedema Compression Garments & Practitioner Registration

29 March 2022

The SWEP eligibility requirements and credentialing Standard for Lymphoedema Practitioners (compression garments) has changed to support consumer access and choice, as well as to align with changes to the Australasian Lymphology Association (ALA) Accredited Lymphoedema Practitioner Program, and new competency standards that underpin ALA endorsed training programs.

SWEP Consumer Reference Group - Call for New Members

8 March 2022

The State-wide Equipment Program (SWEP) is seeking volunteers to share their voice in shaping our services.  SWEP wants to hear what you think - your voice helps to make sure that our services are right for the community.  

SWEP Communique - Reissue Equipment FAQ

2 March 2022

What is 'SWEP reissue' equipment?

SWEP funded assistive technology is owned by SWEP where we have funded more than 50% towards the cost and the item is considered 're-issuable'.


When we are advised that a consumer no longer needs an item that is re-issuable, SWEP arranges collection of the equipment via our contracted Repairs & Re-issue Supplier, Chemtronics. 


The item then undergoes a 'viability assessment' to determine whether it is in good enough condition to be reissued to another consumer.

What is the SWEP reissue database?

Any items that are considered to be in very good condition and suitable for re-issue to another SWEP consumer are entered onto our reissue database.

SWEP Communique - Expression of Interest for Oxygen (adult) Clinical Advisor

28 February 2022

SWEP is seeking expressions of interest from Specialist Respiratory and Sleep Medicine Physicians, to join our expert Clinical Advisory Panel for our adult consumer cohort.

We are seeking highly experienced Specialist Respiratory and Sleep Medicine Physicians who prescribe oxygen for home use regularly and can demonstrate a minimum of 10 years' experience doing so.

You will be committed to the application of best evidence through the Thoracic Society of Australia and New Zealand (TSANZ) Clinical Practice Guideline, for Adult Domiciliary Oxygen Therapy (2014)1

SWEP Communique - Attachment notification issue

14 February 2022

Dear Practitioners,

Due to a recent 'glitch' in the SWEP database it has been brought to our attention that between the 3 - 11  February 2022, any applications that have had additional documents attached, have not generated a notification to the SWEP team.

SWEP Communique - Supply Issues: Bard Flip Flo Valve Bff20 13100010

8 February 2022

Dear Continence Practitioners

Supply Issues:  Bard Flip Flo Valve Bff20 13100010

We have been advised by our contracted Supplier, Independence Australia (IA) that they are having ongoing supply issues with the Bard Flip Flo Valve Bff20 13100010, with no confirmed ETA.

SWEP Communique - Expression of Interest for Continence Clinical Advisor

7 February 2022

SWEP is seeking expressions of interest from Continence Practitioners to join our expert Clinical Advisory Panel for our consumer cohort.

We are seeking highly experienced Continence Practitioners who prescribe continence consumables regularly and can demonstrate a minimum of 10 years' experience.

You will be able to demonstrate participation in activities that contribute directly to maintaining your clinical competence and expertise.

You will have the below registrations and experience;

  •  AHPRA registration as a general nurse
  • A graduate certificate in nursing,  


  •  Employed in a relevant specialty context relating to bladder or bowel dysfunction (e.g. employed as a Nurse Continence Specialist/ Continence Nurse Advisor / Urology Nurse/ Clinical Nurse Consultant (in a related context)


SWEP Communique - Expression of Interest for Speech Pathology Clinical Advisor

7 February 2022

SWEP is seeking expressions of interest from Speech Pathologists to join our expert Clinical Advisory Panel for our consumer cohort.

We are seeking highly experienced Speech Pathologists who prescribe voice aids & laryngectomy consumables regularly and can demonstrate a minimum of 10 years' experience.

You will be a member or an eligible member of Speech Pathology Australia and be able to demonstrate participation in activities that contribute directly to maintaining your clinical competence and expertise.

As a Clinical Advisor you may be required to;


  • Provide clinical support and validation of voice aid & laryngectomy prescriptions
  • Undertake clinical reviews as requested
  • Provide expert advice to the Chief Allied Health Officer specific to the voice aids & laryngectomy category 
  • Participate in projects as required (e.g. updating manuals, resources and education material)
  • Participate in Clinical Advisor Panel meetings (approx. 1 per year)


SWEP Communique - Practitioner Re-Credentialing

20 December 2021

Dear SWEP practitioners

As you are aware, SWEP uses a credentialing based process to acknowledge practitioner levels of experience and currency in a range of assistive technology and professional areas of practice.

What is re-credentialing?

Re-credentialing is the process of periodically reviewing and verifying credentials to ensure a practitioner continues to meet SWEP's requirements and standards applicable to one or more categories or areas of practice. This includes maintenance of roles, experience, mileage, currency, complexity and ongoing learning.

SWEP e-News for Consumers

17 December 2021

If you would like to view this news letter please click here

SWEP Communique - Reissue Scooters Available

22 November 2021

Dear Practitioner

Currently there are a number of four- and three-wheel scooters available in our reissue equipment pool.

If you have a current application with SWEP or are in the process of applying for a scooter we would encourage you to review the Reissue Database to see if one of the scooters would be a match for your consumer.

You can log into the Chemtronics database via this link: https://cabrini.technology/sc/ess.do  

SWEP Communique - Independence Australia advise on delivery prior to Christmas

10 November 2021

Dear Practitioner,

Please see below advice from Independence Australia our supplier of continence products.

Remember to order your products before 1st December 2021


Ensure you have everything you need this holiday season by ordering before December 1st.


Any phone or online orders placed after December 1st may miss out on pre-Christmas delivery.

SWEP Communique - COVID Positive Oxygen in the home

5 November 2021

Dear Practitioner,

The Department of Health has been working with the State-wide Equipment Program (SWEP) team at Ballarat Health Services to provide a centralised process for oxygen supply and ensure we have a secure supply chain. This will be available from Monday the 8th November 2021. This will support the discharge of Covid positive patients who may still require oxygen and can be safely managed at home in line with the Medium Severity Covid Positive Pathway.

The process will allow for central management of oxygen supply across the state to ensure equitable access in line with the Health Emergency and Preparedness Response principles.

SWEP Communique - Orthotics Quote Template

22 October 2021
Dear Practitioners,
SWEP would like to advise that the Orthotics quote template has recently been updated to include a section to confirm/advise if the item is required to be registered with the TGA. We ask that if you are using an old version of the quote template, please cease to do so and commence using the current version which can be locate under the 'For Suppliers' tab on the SWEP website.

SWEP Communique - Domiciliary Oxygen Consumer Survey

21 September 2021

Dear Practitioner

Each year SWEP sends out a Consumer Satisfaction Survey for all our consumers across each of the programs we manage.  This helps us to engage with our consumers and gain feedback on what we do well and what we need to improve on.

Traditionally this is done in paper format and mailed out to consumers.

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