Bendigo Community Health Services is undertaking a project in partnership with Victoria Police Bendigo and the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine focusing on improving the response to presentations of Non-Fatal Strangulation (NFS). This grass-roots response to an indicator of family violence lethality is positioned within the health sector, and has received significant support through multidisciplinary collaboration, allowing the project to strengthen from a local response to a national response. While the project focuses on responding to risk, risk of lethality from homicide and risk of lethality or brain injury from stroke, there is significant scope for disruption and intervention when identified as neck trauma across a range of health sectors, including AOD, homelessness and mental health. This project highlights the benefits of an integrated design framework, led by an agency who has the ability to drive change from within.
Meg Bagnall, Specialist Family Violence Advisor in Alcohol and Other Drugs, Bendigo Community Health Services
Meg Bagnall has worked with women and children for over a decade, with a majority focus on identifying, assessing and responding to family violence through work with both victim-survivors and people who use violence. Since 2019, Meg has supported the AOD sector in implementing and embedding the MARAM framework.
JoAnn Parkin, Senior Physician Forensic Examination, BCHS
Dr. Jo Ann Parkin is a Clinical Forensic Physician at the Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine. Jo Ann is the lead for CFM education and research supporting the Forensic Registrar training program, and has specific experience working with survivors of sexual assault and family violence who have suffered instances of non-fatal strangulation and provides expert testimony supporting criminal justice outcomes.