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Care of ADF Personnel Wounded and Injured on Operations

Defence Sub-Committee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade

24 June 2013

As the Department of Defence (Defence) submitted to the Committee, service in the Australian Defence Force (ADF) is demanding and unique. Defence members may be required to work long hours, shift work and irregular hours under harsh environmental conditions. As well as facing the possibility of service in hostile areas, Defence members participate in other forms of operational activities where a degree of personal risk still exists.

The ADF has now been continually involved in Operations for over a decade. The 2011-12 Defence Annual Report lists 17 separate Operations that the ADF conducted in that period.2 Since 1999, ADF personnel have undertaken some 134,000 individual deployments, and no doubt many have deployed on numerous occasions.

While many of these Operations are carried out in benign environments, a number are not. Consequently, there have been a number of ADF personnel killed or wounded on Operations in recent times. The return to
Australia and the support to the families of those personnel tragically killed on Operations is highly publicised, however, the management and support of those personnel who are wounded is not so widely discussed.

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