Getting your patients back into the practice

In the wake of COVID-19, WA Primary Health Alliance has been working to understand the immediate needs of GPs and their practices and support GPs to maintain a viable practice and productive workforce.

We recognised that WA GPs were experiencing business and financial pressures due to a range of issues, and that due to social isolation measures, many had been quieter than usual.

For some, there was concern that patients may have been neglecting their regular medical care or not attending for appointments that are necessary for screening, prescriptions or immunisations.

Our See Your GP campaign was developed to provide your patients with reassurance about safety and a reminder not to neglect their health. By doing so, we sought to support GPs by promoting the availability and safety of primary care, emphasise the importance of ongoing care, and raise awareness of alternative appointment options such as telehealth.

North Perth GP Dr Belinda Wozencroft says the campaign has helped to reassure patients that it’s safe to come back to the practice.

“People were wise to be cautious in the beginning, but are starting to feel more comfortable with face to face GP visits as they know practices are taking care to keep visiting patients safe,” Dr Wozencroft said.

There is a range of See your GP resources available to remind your patients of the importance of regular medical appointments and reassure them of the availability of safe, essential health care. This includes flyers, social media posts and videos you can download and share on your channels.

You can also continue to reach out to patients through your own regular communications channels, such as newsletters, SMS reminders, via your online booking page or on your website to reinforce the campaigns key messages.

Since launching in late April, the campaign has reached about 1 million people across WA through Google advertising, Facebook,Instagram, state and regional newspapers (including a full page feature in The West Australian) and radio, as well as in- practice screens.

As practices are now starting to see an upward trend in presentations, WA Primary Healh Alliance will look to refocus the campaign on other areas of need, such as mental health, screening, flu and other immunisations.

If you would like to know more or require support, please contact your Primary Health Liaison or the Practice Assist team via email or phone 1800 227 747.