Member for Lowan and Deputy Leader of the Nationals Emma Kealy has called on the Andrews Labor Government to commit the funding necessary to allow the continuation of the Periods, Pain and Endometriosis Program – PPEP Talk® in Victorian schools.
Run by the Pelvic Pain Foundation of Australia, approximately 7,000 Victorian students and staff have participated in PPEP Talk® last year, including 373 students in the Lowan electorate.
The program is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health, with the Victorian Government committing to matching funding of $200,000 per year for Government schools falling under its jurisdiction until November 2022.
Demand for PPEP Talk® from Victorian schools has been high, however anticipated refunding of the program by the Victorian Government in November last year did not occur.
“Quality, evidence-based and medically accurate education around pelvic pain and endometriosis has been shown to contribute to improving health and life trajectories, including reduced school absenteeism, reduced Emergency Department Admissions, and improved workforce and sporting participation for those living with these conditions,” Ms Kealy said.
“In Lowan, each of the eight schools who participated in PPEP Talk® last year have indicated that they would like the program delivered again.”
The following statistics were obtained from the eight participating schools :
1. – 45.39% of students have pain more than three days per month (1-2 days of mild pain is considered normal)
2. – 30.31% of students have pain that interferes with their usual daily activities
3. – 24.48% of students regularly miss school, work or sport because of periods, pain and endometriosis.
“Periods, pain and endometriosis should not interfere with daily activities,” Ms Kealy said.
“PPEP Talk® educates students about endometriosis and what is normal with period and pelvic pain, providing tools to help with self-management and raising awareness to promote early diagnosis, including how and when to seek support.
“I am calling on the Andrews Labor Government to commit the funding necessary in the upcoming state budget to allow the Pelvic Pain Foundation to continue its fantastic work and deliver the PPEP Talk® program in all schools across Victoria, including the remaining 13 schools in the Lowan electorate.”