Preparing for reform


Visit our Speakers page for full speaker and panelist bios.



9:00–9:10 — Welcome, Acknowledgment of Country


Sophie Scott MC, ABC National Medical Reporter; Gus Clelland, CEO

Mental Health Victoria

9:10–9:40 — Opening Address 


Katherine Whetton, Deputy Secretary for Mental Health in the Department

of Health and Human Services

An update from the Victorian Government about the progress and what’s ahead

for Royal Commission reform implementation.


9:40–10:00 — Morning tea break

10:00–10:45 — Panel: Implementation in practice 


Dr Andrew Milat, Director Evidence and Evaluation, NSW Ministry of Health
Mary O’Hagan, New Zealand innovator, thinker and writer
Mary Roberts, Director Children and Families Support and Safeguarding, Department of Health

Margaret Augerinos, CEO Centre for Non-Violence

Four experts share their experiences in large-scale reform implementation, including: 

  • Key requirements for ensuring reform implementation is effective, inclusive and sustainable 

  • Previous experiences in other reform processes, and relevant learnings for the Victorian mental health sector 

  • What has been proven to work 

  • Common risks and challenges in reform implementation, and strategies to manage them 

  • strengths to draw upon 

10:45–11:15 — Fireside Chat: Implementation best-practice 


Dr Robyn Mildon, Executive Director, Centre for Evidence and Implementation

Interview with implementation science expert Dr Robyn Mildon to unpack lessons and learnings on the foundations to success in large-scale reform implementation.

11:15–12:15 — Lunch Break, Virtual Exhibitors Hall


Take a moment to meet with our sponsors in the Virtual Exhibitors Hall.



12:15–12:45 — Keynote address: Co-production as a pillar of success


Lesley Cook, Director, Partners in Practice

Lesley Cook will provide a presentation on the key requirements for authentic co-production.


12:45–1:30 — Panel: Co-production in practice 


Fiona Browning, Lived experience consultant

Kerry Hawkins, Commissioner National Mental Health Commission

Cath Roper, Consumer academic Centre for Psychiatric Nursing

Jacqui Gibson-Roos, Community consumer advocate


Perspectives on co-production in practice, including: 

  • Key requirements to ensure co-production is implemented authentically and effectively 

  • Practical examples of co-production successes and learnings 

  • Common risks and challenges in large-scale reform implementation 

  • How to ensure co-production is inclusive of all voices 

  • How to support and build capacity for participation in co-production processes 

  • Co-production vs co-design 



1:30–1:40 — Afternoon tea break


1:40–2:10 — Keynote address: Leadership and culture change as pillars of success 


Adam Fennessy PSM, Victorian Public Sector Commissioner


Adam Fennessy PSM presents on how to shift mindsets, foster collaboration, ignite change and involve leaders in driving system reform.


2:10–2:50 — Panel: Putting reform into practice in the Victorian mental health sector 


Tricia Szirom, External Stakeholder Liaison and Royal Commission Lead Advisor at VMIAC

Marie Piu, CEO Tandem Inc.

A/Prof Ravi Bhat, Divisional Clinical Director Goulburn Valley Health

Jayne Nelson, CEO IPC Health

Experts share their perspectives on the key themes of the day, including: 

  • Key hopes/concerns with reform project  

  • Key requirements for effective, inclusive and sustainable reform implementation 

  • Critical approaches to implementation that will bring about real change, including with respect to addressing shifts in power 

  • Opportunities, challenges and strategies to vest co-production across the system, both during and after reform phase 

  • Opportunities, challenges and strategies to change system culture and vest system with good leadership 

  • Next steps in reform phase to achieve the above



2:50–3:00 — Closing Remarks 


Sophie Scott

Program for the Preparing For Reform mental health symposium