Sub Group Updates – Autumn 2019


What a busy and productive start to 2019 since I last wrote to you all. ALUCA WA have found a new home to host our events this year and we were extremely delighted to be joined by Dr John Cummins, Consultant Chief Medical Officer from SCOR to begin proceedings in our new home.

Dr Cummins delivered a very comprehensive presentation covering ‘The Future of Medicine’ which included a look back on some of the changes that have occurred over the past 30 years for good measure. This session allowed us all to gain a greater understanding of contemporary trends in medicine which will and are disrupting the insurance industry, Dr Cummins covered topics including anti-aging, cardiovascular and cancer trends. It would seem that the Vampires knew something about anti-aging after all, and we can all expect to visit a blood bank in the future to collect a regular donation to reduce the ravages of time. Thank you Dr Cummins, and SCOR.


We’ve seen our membership grow in the off-season and it was nice to see some new faces at our latest event. If you know of someone in your workplace that would benefit from becoming an ALUCA member, please encourage them to join or to contact me for further details.

Your committee are currently finalising details for our second Seminar towards the end of May and plans are already on track to deliver a mini-ALUCA event in August. Save The Dates have already been added to the Members Section.



See you in May.

Stephen Chapman
Chair – WA ALUCA Committee


For SA’s first ALUCA event for the year we were joined by Dr Cummings from SCOR with an insightful presentation on the Transformation of Medicine, it’s impacts not only to Underwriting and Claims but also policy definitions.

In his presentation he also had talked about HIV resistant donors being able to cure AIDS in HIV positive recipients to reversing the aging process which sparked some healthy conversations around the moral implications.

Our next ALUCA meeting (MiniLuca) will be in late August, this will be a full afternoon event with a no. of speakers.

Ashley Hicks
Chair – South Australia ALUCA Committee


The ALUCA Rehabilitation Committee

The ALUCA Rehabilitation Committee continues to support the strategic and operational direction of the Board in 2019. We do this by promoting best practice rehabilitation standards across the life insurance industry. Through the provision of high quality events and seminars, the committee offers rehabilitation professionals opportunities for evidenced based professional development, industry networking and up-skilling of knowledge. The committee continues to be a collective voice, represented by professionals with allied health or medical qualifications to ensure life insurance continues to be a lead in the delivery of best practice rehabilitation.

Planning and preparation for our 2019 events is underway! The committee has had the opportunity to share innovative ideas to support rehabilitation professionals in the industry post the Royal Commission findings and recommendations. We are finalising plans for our first events in May across both Sydney and Melbourne. Our theme will be on the holistic management of mental health conditions, with a key focus for early intervention support. We have engaged with a number of subject matter experts in mental health to be our key speakers at our events. The goal of the professional development day is to empower with new insights and provide Practical ideas for supporting customers with mental health conditions as early as they need further details will be available shortly.

Preparations for the ALUCA Life Insurance Excellence Awards are also underway, in Melbourne on 22nd May. It is great to see there will be such a strong presence from rehabilitation at The TPD Working Group are excited to resume their focus on best practice standards in employability assessments in 2019. The final version of the position statement will be released on the ALUCA website later this year.

It has been a steady start to 2019 for the ALUCA Rehabilitation Committee and we look forward to another successful year ahead.

Amlan Sharma
Chair – ALUCA Rehabilitation Committee


Welcome back for the first edition for 2019, seems like this year is flying along.

At the end of last year we bid farewell to a number of our committee. In NSW: Taveet Garabedian, Paul Bennell, Carmel Myers and in Victoria Lana Collaris and Emy Vamos. The ALUCA CMG would like to thank all of them for all their work over the years.

The ALUCA CMG is currently planning our first event for the year which will be our Legal Sessions to take place in Sydney 6th May at the Westin and Melbourne on 8th May at the AMP offices. Our speakers this year will be from HWL Ebsworths and Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA). Further details for this event will be sent out in late March.

Together with ALUCA NSW we are in the process of planning the NSW PD Day to be held in October 2019.
We look forward to seeing you at our events in 2019.

Myles Kennedy
Chair –  CMG ALUCA


It is hard to believe that we are nearing the end of the first quarter of the year.  It has been a quick 3 months.

There have been a couple of changes to the Committee post our last update.  Gail Jones our Communications Officer has hung up her boots after a period of approx. 3 years.  Gail has been a tremendous support during her tenure, providing amazing ideas and updates on our behalf.  She will be missed but certainly not forgotten.  As one door closes, another one opens…we are delighted to welcome Isaac Cracknell to the role of Treasurer.  Welcome aboard Isaac !

We hosted our first event on Wednesday 27th March at AMP to a record breaking attendance for an early morning session.  Thank you to everyone who set their alarms early to attend this breakfast event.



Renada Lee (Impact Manager – Insurance) and Tom Notley (Program Manager) of SuperFriend, presented the latest National Workplace data findings following an assessment of the mental health and wellbeing of more than 5,000 people within Australian workplaces.  From the financial services perspective this was a very timely study as it was conducted shortly after the Royal Commission in the banking, superannuation and financial services industry was established.  Renada and Nick provided very meaningful insights into what the data highlighted, including the extent of mental health in the industry, the types of mental health issues experienced at work and what is preventing employers from taking action.  Additionally they discussed opportunities for creating and sustaining thriving, mentally healthy workplaces and positive customer outcomes.  There were a number of take-aways from this event and it will be great see how the findings of this data progress as SuperFriend continue to add to the existing information.  Further information in relation to this study and other helpful information can be found on the SuperFriend website


The Committee are currently working on our events for the rest of the year and we expect to have these locked in shortly with further details to follow.  We can confirm that we will be holding our flagship MiniALICA conference on 17th October 2019.  This event sold out last year so keep your eye out for details and ensure you save the date to avoid missing out.

Suzanne Whyte
Chair – Victoria ALUCA Committee


With four seminars planned, 2019 promises to be a full year for ALUCA QLD.

Our first ALUCA seminar is set for Thursday April 11th.  Leading legal consultant, Paul Hastings will examine the current life insurance landscape post PJC and RC, and provide a Plain English assessment of what it means for Underwriting and Claims professionals.  With the industry under unprecedented scrutiny, Paul will also use case studies to demonstrate some tips and pitfalls when looking at claims involving non-disclosure.

For those who like to plan ahead, our calendar of events for the remainder of 2019 is listed below;

Event 2 – Wed July 24 (Breakfast seminar – 7.30am to 9am)

Event 3 – Thurs Sept 12 – Triple Treat Event (Half day seminar 12.30pm-5pm followed by drinks/canapes)

Event 4 – Fri Nov 29 – End of year event (5pm to 8pm)

We’d also like to update you on some changes to the QLD ALUCA Sub Group as there has been a couple of changes since 2018.  Our committee for the year ahead is;

  • President: Matthew Swanson
  • Secretary:  Jody O’Sullivan
  • Treasurer: Gretel Spizick
  • Committee Members: Karyn Bradford, Daniel Devine and Karl Bird

We would like take this opportunity to acknowledge Peter Crawford and Jenny Thompson for their time and valuable contributions over recent years and also welcome Karl Bird onto the Qld committee.

Look forward to seeing you soon in 2019.

Jody O’Sullivan
Secretary – Queensland ALUCA Committee


Greetings from the NSW Committee.

After a successful 2018 with record event attendances, we are excited to present a great year of education and development to our members. We farewelled a number of committee members at end of last year and advertised for new volunteers.

Many thanks to all who have applied. I am excited to share our 2019 Committee:

  • Chair: Lisa-Marie McKechnie
  • Deputy Chair: Gabriella Siefert
  • Treasurer: Stephen Connolly
  • Event Co-ordinator: Tonja Nachman
  • Marketing and Comms Lead: Ami Barua
  • Working Group Lead: Catherine McAdam
  • Committee member: Erin Touzell
  • Committee member: Jacqueline Little
  • Committee member: Simon Andrew.

Our new committee members bring in expertise and wealth of knowledge from underwriting, claims, legal and product background. The committee is busy planning all the activities for the rest of the year.

There will be 4 events in May, August, October and December. The first one for 2019 is on Thursday 23 May 12-2pm at Rydges Hotel World Square. We very much hope you can join us for a special session with Pacific Life Re’s CMO Dr Bill Monday on “A rare insight into mental health”. The most popular professional development day (MiniALUCA) has been locked for 16th October. Please save this date in your calendar, the committee is working hard to deliver an exceptional day.

Watch this space for the rest of the events and keep an eye out for ALUCA email invitations.

We look forward to another successful year ahead and hoping to see you all at the events this year.

Have a great Easter.


Ami Barua
Marketing and Comms Lead- ALUCA NSW