Better health, together: The journey so far

To end the year, WA Primary Health Alliance CEO, Learne Durrington is joined by Board Chair, Dr Richard Choong to reflect on the journey so far, our impact on the primary care sector and what success will look like in five years from now.

WA Primary Health Alliance is making an impact on the fabric of the healthcare environment through our role in creating the right conditions to ensure the best possible health outcomes for all Western Australians, particularly for those who fall through the gaps.

Bridging the divide between what are in effect the two different health systems and improving the integration of general practice and the state health system is another of our priorities.

These aims are reflected in our achievements since we were established in mid-2015, a journey we talked about earlier this year, when the Australian Department of Health renewed our contract for a further three years.

However, our progress in joining up the system is critical, as without this, we will continue to see fragmentation, duplication and inefficiency.

From the outset, we have been determined to work collaboratively with health agencies, clinicians, service providers and the community. This approach has seen us develop and refine a system of comprehensive population health need assessments to deliver evidence-based solutions to meet community healthcare needs.

We have worked tirelessly and closely with a range of stakeholders across the state’s health sector and the community to help join up the health system and keep more people well in the community and out of hospital.

This year, in particular, our role in advocating for and leading system change has been notable, through providing a primary care perspective in reforms such as the review of the Central Referral System, outpatient services, the development of Urgent Care Clinics and the Sustainable Health Review.

Looking forward five years from now, we are confident that by building on a strong foundation of engaging with GPs, community and other key stakeholders to determine priority needs, we will have made significant inroads in addressing system-wide health issues in an ever changing and complex healthcare environment.