Dec

05

2019

Healthy Communities of Tomorrow

The North Coast community will have a big say in its own future health care, attendees at the 2019 Community Health Day in Ballina heard last week.

Themed ‘Healthy Communities of Tomorrow’, last Thursday’s event was a joint initiative of the Northern NSW Local Health District (NNSWLHD) and the North Coast Primary Health Network (NCPHN).

ABC Radio National’s award-winning health broadcaster, Dr Norman Swan, facilitated the day, which was held at the Ballina RSL Club and included around 200 community members and representatives from across the health and social services sectors.

Dr Swan said there were many factors that affected health outcomes and a person’s life expectancy. One of the key ones was location, which influenced income, housing, education, access to health care and more.

The North Coast of NSW is one of the lowest socioeconomic regions in Australia. Priority areas include mental health, Aboriginal health and wellbeing, alcohol and drug use and the ageing community.

Dr Swan said studies had repeatedly shown one of the key determinants of ongoing good health was the ability to retain control of your life.

He said when people lost the ability to control their lives, either through sickness or for other reasons, they were unable to make life-affecting decisions, which often led to chronic stress and escalating health issues.

Dr Swan said the healthy communities of tomorrow would be ‘engaged communities’, pointing to the current collaboration between the Mid North Coast Local Health District, NNSWLHD and NCPHN, known as the North Coast Collective.

NCPHN Chief Executive Julie Sturgess said the North Coast Collective strategy was a work in progress. It is using community consultation, data and detailed modelling to produce a regional blueprint for future health care, with a goal of delivering better planned services.

She told attendees that deciding where to invest scarce health dollars for best results was one of the big challenges facing a health system constantly looking to improve outcomes for the community.

“We have done a lot of work with our communities over recent years, asking how do they feel about health,” Ms Sturgess said.

NNSWLHD Chief Executive Wayne Jones said there was constant pressure to allocate funds where they were most needed, in the face of population growth and ever-increasing demand for health services.

“The whole essence of the North Coast Collective is to improve the lives of people living on the North Coast,” Mr Jones said.

“Our vision is to be better connected – to put the needs of carers and consumers at the centre.

“This is a long game and it has to have all agencies involved. We can talk change until we die, but we need to start implementing change.”

Mental Health Practitioner Directory

Frequently Asked Questions

Any AHPRA or AASW registered mental health practitioner providing services in the Mid North Coast and/or Northern NSW.

Social workers, psychotherapists and counsellors are ineligible to list in the directory.

By listing, you will let GPs, other referrers and consumers know that you are practising in Mid North Coast and/or Northern NSW. You can provide information such as where you are located, the services you provide, the population groups you support and your clinical interests.

No, the directory is a free service provided by Healthy North Coast.

This directory enables you to provide real-time information about your availability to accept referrals, as well as how long people may have to wait for an appointment. You can update this information as your availability changes. This will help GPs and other referrers ensure they only refer clients to practitioners who have the capacity to see them.

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You can choose to display your email address and your phone number so that people can contact you directly. You may prefer not to display these, in which case people can contact you by completing an enquiry form located in the Directory. Your choices can be updated anytime.

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Yes, you can update your listing or remove it at any time by clicking the “update practitioner details” button on your listing. You will receive a secure website link to your nominated admin email that will enable you to make changes, delete or put your listing on hold. You can also show when you are taking extended leave or are not available for a specific period, rather than completely removing your listing.

We will also send you an email every three months (90 days) prompting you to check that your information is up to date.

You will be responsible for managing the information in your listing and ensuring that it is up to date. You will also be asked to check the information before it is published in the directory.

We will also send you an email every three months (90 days) prompting you to check that your information is up to date so that the directory displays accurate information.

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