Consumer Advisors are an important way for Monash Health to foster partnerships with the broader community, to ensure we are meeting community needs. For those who have used our services (or cared for someone who has) becoming a consumer advisor allows you to contribute to Monash Health on an ongoing basis.
If you are interested in becoming a Consumer Advisor, please apply to join our Consumer Advisor Register via our online application form (please note eligibility criteria listed below).
You don’t have to be a Consumer Advisor to provide us with feedback. All members of the community have the opportunity to provide feedback to us individually or to come along to one of our community forums or open meetings to have their say.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Consumer Advisor Register?
The Consumer Advisor Register is a list of consumer volunteers who are interested in giving feedback/advice to Monash Health committees, projects and improvement activities on a ongoing basis. Members of the register have met all Consumer Advisor governance requirements including signing of confidentiality agreements.
What is a Consumer Advisor?
Consumer Advisors are volunteers who have experience of Monash Health services as either a patient, carer or a family member of a patient and would like to be involved in improving health care services and delivery. They provide advice to Monash Health in a formal capacity through involvement on committees, working groups and project teams.
Who can join the Register?
Community members who use Monash Health Services can apply to join the register. This includes Monash Health patients, carers, and family members of patients in the Monash Health catchment.
The following are not eligible to join the register:
- Monash Health Staff
- Individuals who represent commercial organisations/businesses
- Individuals who represent peak bodies or health advocacy groups will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Is it a paid position?
Being a Consumer Advisor is an unpaid voluntary position and there are no sitting fees to reimburse your time. Monash Health appreciates this contribution which benefits both you and the community by improving Monash Health services.
However, there is reimbursement of some out-of-pocket costs to attend meetings, such as:
- car parking
- public transport fares
- contribution towards petrol costs (based on a fixed rate per kilometre)
Other costs can be negotiated prior to starting a consumer advisor activity, such as taxi fares, babysitting or personal care attendant fees.
What do I need to do to join?
To apply to be a Monash Health Consumer Advisor, fill out the application form at the top of this page. You will then be required to:
- be interviewed as to your suitability for the role and provide the name of two referees
- undergo a Police Check and a Working with Children check
- undertake induction, orientation and training
- adhere to codes of conduct, privacy and confidentiality together with all other relevant Monash Health policies.
What happens to the information and personal details I provide to Monash Health when applying to be a Consumer Advisor?
All your personal information remains confidential and will only be used for the purpose of consumer participation activities at Monash Health. Your information remains totally separate from your Monash Health medical record.
How do I get involved in activities through the register?
When opportunities become available, such as a vacancy on a committee, details are emailed to all those listed on the Consumer Advisor Register. This will include the time, location and frequency of meetings, and the project details.
If you are interested in the opportunity, you can respond by email indicating your interest, and a staff member will be in touch with you. Some opportunities also require a selection process involving an interview. This will be clearly indicated.
Is there a minimum number of hours I need to be involved?
You can get involved in as much or as little as you like. However, it is expected that you will be involved in at least one activity over a 12 month period. When involved in an activity it is also expected that you will fully participate in that activity. ie If you volunteer for a committee you should attend at least 75% of all meetings.
What type of activities could I get involved in?
There is a range of activities open to consumer advisor involvement. Some entail ongoing membership of a committee while others are shorter term commitments, which deal with a specific project, and have a finite time frame.
Some examples of past short term activities include:
- input into the design of the Victorian Heart Hospital, including the recommendation for patient lounges
- input into the design of the new Monash Medical Centre Emergency Department
- input into the design of information provided to patients when they are discharged, and how to ensure the discharge process is efficient and best for patients
- providing feedback on Monash health patient information brochures such as Stoke patient information
- participating in surveys
Some examples of ongoing/long-term activities include being a member of one of the many Monash Health committees with consumer advisors, such as:
- the Partnering with Consumers National Standards Committee
- the Monash Children’s Hospital Leadership Committee
- the General Medicine Quality and Safety Committee
What training and support will I receive as a consumer to support me in my role?
Consumer Advisors are required to participate in a number of in-house training packages covering Monash Health values, fire training and confidentiality. As well as the orientation and ongoing support you receive from the Manager of Consumer Partnerships, you can access many of the Monash Health training and education opportunities through the Monash Health Learning portal. There will also be training opportunities offered during the year by the Monash Health Patient Experience Unit.
What if I have a criminal conviction?
A conviction on your police record does not necessarily exclude you from the register. Eligibility will be on a case-by-case basis basis, depending on the type of conviction and the consumer advisor role being applied for in-line with the Monash Health Police Check policy.