Health and Wellbeing Services: COVID-19 FAQ

The University has a range of Health and Wellbeing services for students. During the COVID-19 outbreak our services will remain available to you. Click the headings to find out more about each service and to see answers to common questions students are having.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a crisis that cannot wait for an appointment, we recommend these services.

Medical Centres

If you suspect you may have the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) call the dedicated 24-hour Australian Government hotline on 1800 675 398. Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a personal or medical crisis that cannot wait for an appointment, we recommend these services.

Our Mt Helen Health Centre remains open for student appointments. There are bulk-billing Medical Centres and hospitals near our other campuses. Click here for information about our on-campus and recommend off-campus health centres.

Financial Support

We appreciate that times are tough, particularly at the moment. If you are struggling to pay for food or petrol we may be able to assist with up to $200 worth of vouchers. If you’re struggling to pay bills we may be able to assist with up to $500 toward bills.

To find out more please contact our Financial Support Service via our website or call reception on (03) 5327 9470 or (03) 5122 6425 to make a phone appointment.

I need support with access or understanding my Centrelink entitlements.

Government supports is frequently changing at this time. For this reason our Financial Support staff are not able to help with specific Centrelink enquiries. We recommend seeking information from Centrelink. If you have been directly impacted by COVID-19 please refer to Centrelink’s specific COVID-19 webpage.

I'm worried about losing work and keeping up with my bills. What can I do?

We have a range of supports that you may be eligible for.  If you are struggling to pay for food or petrol we may be able to assist with up to $200 worth of vouchers.  If you’re struggling to pay bills we may be able to assist with up to $500 toward bills.

Please refer to our Financial Supports webpage for more information.

I'm feeling overwhelmed with my debts. What can I do?

To organise a free appointment with a financial counsellor near you, we recommend the National Debt Helpline.

I’m an international student.  What financial assistance can I receive?

We have a range of supports for International Students.

You are eligible for Financial Aid.   If you are struggling to pay for food or petrol we may be able to assist with up to $200 worth of vouchers.  If you’re struggling to pay bills we may be able to assist with up to $500 toward bills.

Counselling

Can I still get an appointment with the University counsellors?

Yes. The University counselling service continues to offer free and confidential sessions for students experiencing challenges, including anxiety and stress around the COVID-19 outbreak. During the outbreak, counselling sessions are being primarily offered by phone or if necessary Skype. Book your appointment at the Counselling service's page.

I’m struggling with my studies and need an extension.  What can I do?

We understand that there have been significant changes and challenges to your studies as a result of the impact of COVID-19. There are a range of supports you can access to assist you with Special Consideration.

There are discretionary extensions of up to 5 days that you can apply for without a medical certificate or similar.

In addition to this there is General Special Consideration which enables you to discuss your needs with a counsellor to determine what support you may need.

We also have exam related special consideration. To find out more please visit the Special Consideration page.

What support is available for University staff?

Staff are able to access free and confidential counselling services through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Visit the EAP page to find out more or book an appointment.

How can I look after my mental health?

For guidance on caring for your mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak, we recommend the quality resources recently made available by:

The ABC have a great article on looking after your mental health while working from home, and we also recommend Psychology Tools' article on living with worry and anxiety amidst global uncertainty.

International Students

We recognise that COVID-19 creates particularly difficult situations for international students, and we want to reassure you that our International Student Support service remains open and here to support you. You can reach us on international.ss@federation.edu.au or call (03) 5327 9446.

I'm worried about how I'm going to cope financially. What can I do?

We have a range of supports for International Students.

You are eligible for Financial Aid.   If you are struggling to pay for food or petrol we may be able to assist with up to $200 worth of vouchers.  If you’re struggling to pay bills we may be able to assist with up to $500 toward bills. Please refer to our Financial Supports web page for more information.

I'm worried about my studies, who can I talk to?

You should speak with your academic staff as early as possible for advice, particularly if you find online learning difficult. You can also speak with a Federation University counsellor who can support you to work through your concerns and assist you to make a plan that supports your needs. For information on how to make an appointment with a counsellor, visit the Counselling page.

I'm feeling overwhelmed and/or isolated.

Feeling overwhelmed and isolation is challenging and can be scary.  During this challenging time most of us will feel sad, confused, angry, worried and anxious.  This is normal, scary but normal. However if these responses are severe or prolonged it may impact our well-being.  There are a range of creative strategies you can use to assist you to minimise the impact isolation may be having.  Some strategies may work for you, others may not.

Here are a range of resources that may assist you to understand your feelings of isolation and access support:

If you are required to self-isolate or just missing the social side of life on campus, consider using our Facebook group as a social space to ask questions, chat with other students, or just share interesting and funny things you have found to help us all through the day.

If your feelings are severe or impact your well-being, please speak with a Federation University counsellor who can support you to work through your concerns and assist you to make a plan that supports your needs. To make an appointment with a counsellor, visit the Counselling page.

I need advice on work or travel restrictions.

For more information about variations to International Student work restrictions, and the latest travel restrictions, visit the Home Affairs website. Individual employers have different agreements with the government in relation to work restrictions, so if you believe that you may be entitled to work additional hours during the semester, you must speak with your employer before undertaking any additional work.

Scholarships

The Scholarships Office remains open for students. We're best contacted at scholarship@federation.edu.au or (03) 5327 9430. There may be delays in responding, but we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Will changes to my course due to the outbreak impact my scholarship?

All Scholarships, Bursaries and Grants will continue to be paid as planned, with minimal impact on students as possible.

I need financial support, can you help?

If the COVID-19 situation has impacted you financially, please make an appointment with our Financial Aid Office, by calling 03 5327 9470.

Disabilities Services

The University's Disability Learning Access Unit will continue to offer all their services to students with disabilities. This includes making reasonable adjustments to study requirements for students with a disability, medical condition or mental health condition.

We understand for many students with a disability the change to studying online might be a time you need extra support. Feel free to call or email us and discuss this.

Appointments can be made by phoning (03) 5327 9470 (Ballarat and Wimmera) or (03) 5122 6425 (Berwick and Gippsland). Or emailing disability@federation.edu.au

Appointments will primarily be via phone or Skype, however where a student’s disability precludes them from using these methods successfully we will meet face to face.

Student Advisory

The Student Advisory Service continues to offer all of our services to students via telephone and email appointments. Students who have been called to hearings, or who require support for a meeting with the University, can ask Student Advisory Service to help them prepare for their meeting and to attend with them as a support person via phone.

The best way to request assistance from the Student Advisory Service is by:

We aim to respond to enquiries within two working days.