Sub Group Reports – Autumn 2018


They say New Year, New You, New Us and it’s not about how far one travels, but how much one grows through the journey that matters.”

Rehabilitation support within life insurance continues to evolve, and the ALUCA Rehabilitation Committee is committed to meeting changing demands by providing rehabilitation professionals and claims professionals with opportunities for professional development, industry networking, and ensuring that as an industry we are leaders in defining and delivering best practice rehabilitation.

This year, the ALUCA Rehabilitation Sub Group welcomes on board five new committee members. As NSW Events Coordinators, Ben Crawley (BT) and Gemma Clay (TAL). As Communications Lead, Amlan Sharma (AMP). As VIC Events Coordinators, Josh Agar (MLC) and Trent McCormick (AMP). We also acknowledge those committee members continuing for 2018; Lena Kesoglou (MLC), Nicholas Boyle (AIA), Marcelle Vega (RGA), Carly Van Den Akker (SwissRe), Kristina Maguire (AMP) and Jen Jackson (CommInsure).

Planning and preparation for our 2018 events is in full swing and the sub group has had the opportunity to share new and creative ideas together as we strive to support rehabilitation professionals in life insurance rise to the challenges in an ever-evolving and dynamic time for our industry. The ALUCA Rehabilitation Sub Group is currently finalizing plans for our first events in April across both Sydney and Melbourne combined with the ALUCA Medical Sub Group. As a sneak peek, our Sydney event will focus on neurological conditions and our Melbourne event will focus on chronic and degenerative conditions. These events will provide insight into best practice medical and rehabilitative interventions for complex medical conditions that are historically difficult to manage with limited community resources. Further details will be available shortly.

Our 2018 ALUCA Rehabilitation Working Group is also underway and is led by Marcella Vega (RGA) with the support of Carly Van Den Akker (SwissRe). The focus for 2018 is developing a consensus statement on best practice rehabilitation for the life insurance industry. The Working Group is supported by a range of rehabilitation professionals from insurers, reinsurers and rehabilitation providers. The Working Group will be consulting with a range of groups and committees, both internal and external to the industry, as part of the development of this project.

It has been a fast-paced and exhilarating start to 2018 for the ALUCA Rehabilitation Sub Group and we look forward to another successful and exciting year ahead.

Amlan Sharma
Communications Lead



Welcome back to the first edition of the New Year. Since last we spoke, your committee has come together and agreed a framework for this year’s events.

Our first event of the year kicks off on Thursday 5th April when we are joined by Keynote Speaker Dr Anthony Cairns – Orthopaedic Surgeon.

We are hoping that all members will gain some wonderful insight into a number of shoulder and knee disorders in what is being planned as an interactive seminar with plenty of audience participation.

We look forward to seeing as many of our local members at our next event.

Stephen Chapman
WA Chair



We are yet to stage an event at this early stage of 2018 however this is what we have in store over the next nine months…

  • April – We will be running our popular Legal Session in both Sydney and Melbourne.  This event in Melbourne will be run with ALUCA VIC
  • May –  We will be assisting with the ALUCA Awards Night
  • July/August – We will be running financial sessions in both Sydney and Melbourne, due to popular demand
  • November/December – End of year event with combined with the other NSW sub groups

*** Expressions of Interest *** we are seeking two new committee members, one each in Sydney and Melbourne. Here is your opportunity to add value to our team and another string to your career development bow at the same time.  If this interests you please contact Niamh on 02 8295 9898 or email ***

Niamh McCormack
Vic Chair


Greetings from the enviable sunshine and warmth of Queensland. 2017 did not disappoint in the ALUCA arena, with record seminar attendances, and of course the overwhelming success of the inaugural ‘Triple Treat’ seminar mid-year. We capped off a robust year of education and development with a pre-Christmas seminar at the iconic Breakfast Creek Hotel.

Ben Ikin, former Bronco and host of NRL 360 – Fox Sports regaled us with numerous stories that had a footy-mad crowd transfixed for over an hour. Ben is also heavily involved with the Men of League Foundation, which aims to provide support and assistance to men, women and children from the rugby league community who have fallen on hard times. The foundation is considered one of the largest sports-based charities in the world. Jim Welsh was on hand to enjoy the festivities and we thank him for making the effort to support the occasion.

2018 is shaping up to be another bumper year within the QLD ALUCA community, including of course the October biennial conference in Tasmania. Our committee for 2018:

Matthew Swanson          President

Jody O’Sullivan                 Secretary

Gretel Spizick                    Treasurer

Daniel Devine                   Committee

Aaron Widt                        Committee

Karyn Bradford                 Committee

Jenny Thompson              Committee

Peter Crawford                 Committee

We take this opportunity to acknowledge the significant contribution to ALUCA QLD made by our outgoing President, Aaron Widt. Aaron’s involvement with QLD ALUCA stretches across ten years. His unwavering advocacy for ALUCA has been pivotal in steering the QLD sub-group to its current level of success and engagement.

The schedule of events for 2018 will be available on the ALUCA website in the coming weeks, and we look forward to seeing you at an event this year.

Jody O’Sullivan


What a great start to 2018 with our first seminar.

Dr Andrew Jakobovits who is a leading private consulting Gastroenterologist with Cabrini Hospital, Senior Visiting Gastroenterologist with Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, Senior Lecturer with Monash University Department of Medicine, Alfred Hospital, Melbourne. He presented on inflammatory bowel disease and was delightful.

Many thanks to the Committee for their efforts.  We are surveying attendees for ideas for next year’s planning.

Any SA members reading this that didn’t make this session, we would also love your feedback on any seminar ideas that you would encourage you to attend please provide feedback to

We will have a Resilience workshop on 10th July and look forward to seeing you all there.

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I’d like to extend our sincere thanks on behalf of the ALUCA NSW Group to former ALUCA NSW Chair Viv Murphy  from GenRe  who led the ALUCA NSW group for the last 2 years. Many thanks to her for all that she did and achieved during her time as chair. I had the pleasure of working closely with Viv in the ALUCA NSW Treasurers role and am both thrilled and honoured to now take over the reigns as ALUCA NSW’s Sub-Group Chair. For those of you I haven’t met you my name is Lisa-Marie McKechnie and I am a partner at Mills Oakley and passionate about the life insurance industry.

The first NSW Sub-Group event was held on March 8th and we have to thank both GenRe and Viv Murphy for helping to facilitate the great opportunity to have dialogue with GenRe’s  International Life & Health R & D CMO, Dr John O’Brien who provided a fascinating session  on the latest advances in cancer treatment. This was a complimentary session for all ALUCA members and the event was booked out with standing room left only! It was a great way to start the year.

In NSW we also had another wonderful opportunity to engage with another global head visiting in Sydney.  This was with SCOR Global’s Head of R & D Health & Longevity out from Switzerland, Dr Daria Ossipova.  It was another highly relevant session where we gained insights into big data advantage with machine learning impacts on underwriting and claims.    Thanks to both SCOR and ANZ for making this event possible and again this was provided as a complimentary service to ALUCA members with the event also booking out.

The ALUCA NSW group is excited about the year ahead. We farewelled a number of committee members  at the end of last year and advertised earlier in the year for new volunteers to help fill the vacant positions. Many thanks to all who have applied and apologies for any delay in coming back to you   – the handover with the former committee only took part this month and we are now bedding everything down with former committee members stepping into the  Vice Chair, Treasurers and the Secretary role.

We are working on the events for the rest of the year and will have dates out to members shortly for our next event next quarter as well as the new ALUCA NSW committee members.

The ALUCA NSW group are hard at work with the CMG and Rehab groups to plan the inaugural ALUCA Life Insurance Excellence Awards night at Darling Harbour on May 24th.  We hope to see you there.



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