Advocacy, collaboration and influence
Macular Disease Foundation Australia is the national peak body for the macular disease community.
In 2019, the Australian Government released the National Strategic Action Plan for Macular Disease, outlining a national, coordinated response to macular disease.
The endorsement of the strategy, prepared by MDFA, is recognition of the enormous impact macular disease has in our society.
Australia is a world leader in fighting macular disease, thanks to the input from so many stakeholders across the macular disease eco-system.
The ‘roadmap’ provided in the National Strategic Action Plan for Macular Disease has 44 action points that will allow this partnership to continue in a coordinated and strategic way. It will ensure limited health care resources are better targeted.
The National Strategic Action Plan for Macular Disease is also available in text only.
As the representative voice, we influence Australian health, aged care and disability agendas, to improve outcomes for patients, their families and carers. Our representations are evidence based.
Our Consumer Reference Group and the wider macular disease community play a key role in informing our work and what matters most to them.
We work with government and non-government organisations to tackle system change and champion quality of life for Australians living with macular conditions, ensuring that sight-saving treatments and support are accessible and affordable.
We collaborate with a number of organisations to action changes that are important to our community, including:
- the Australian Patient Advocacy Alliance
- Consumer Health Forum
- Vision 2020 Australia
- the National Aged Care Alliance
- NSW Non-Government Organisation Advisory Committee, and
- KeepSight Reference Group.
MDFA regularly makes evidence-based submissions to state and federal government agencies and non-government organisations on a wide range of matters impacting the macular disease community.
Since its inception, MDFA has participated in a number of campaigns on behalf of people living with macular disease, their families and carers.
Health Care – Proposed changes to Medicare for eye injections
In 2020, the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) Review Taskforce published its ophthalmology report recommending changes to Medicare rebates for intravitreal injections (eye injections). These injections are used to deliver sight-saving treatment for people with a range of macular conditions, such as wet (neovascular) age-related macular degeneration (wet AMD) and diabetic macular oedema (DMO). This is an active campaign.
Aged care – improving low vision support in the aged care system
In March 2021, the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety released its final report, which included recommendations to make low vision aids and technologies more accessible for older Australians.
Disability care – Improving access to low vision aids and technologies
MDFA continues to advocate for a national low vision aids and technology program, so that all Australians with vision loss or blindness are able to equitably access low vision aids and technology, regardless of their age or where they live.