Health justice partnership model

Ms Fiona Mc Alinden, Ms Maya Avibegovic

1Monash Health , Cheltenham, Australia

Health justice partnership model – An innovative approach to family violence in a culturally diverse health setting

InTouch Multicultural Centre against Family Violence: Maya Avdibegovic, CEO

1 Monash Health, 400 Warrigal Rd, Cheltenham, Vic 3192.

2 Maya Avdibegovic, inTouch Multicultural Centre against Family Violence, GPO Box 2905, Melbourne VIC 3001


Health justice partnerships (HJP) are evolving nationally and this paper outlines the development and evaluation of a HJP between Monash Health and inTouch Multicultural Centre against Family Violence.

Monash Health and InTouch (InTouch) funded by the Victorian Legal Services Board entered into a partnership to develop an integrated health/legal service for culturally diverse women presenting to a health care facility disclosing current family violence.


Qualitative and quantitative methods we used to collect data sets which include staff surveys, client participant data, health and legal staff interviews and focus group results and a partnership evaluation.


This paper describes the development of a successful health justice partnership and service development methodology including executive support, the role of social work, development of a partnership agreement, staff engagement through education and training and the operations of the legal service within Dandenong Hospital, a highly culturally and linguistically diverse area. In an 18 month period over 550 staff were trained in the identification and response to family violence, 36 women from 9 different linguistic groups received integrated health and legal support services of short and medium term duration. An online staff education module on Family Violence was developed and implemented.

Significance of findings to allied health:

The development of integrated HJP’s are aligned to the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Family Violence. Developing on-site legal services has the capacity to improve health outcomes for CALD women and their children.