After hours primary care – a sustainable model for Leongatha, Foster and Korumburra

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Gippsland Medicare Local (GML) has engaged Larter to work with stakeholders to develop a new after hours primary care Sunday service for the towns of Leongatha, Foster and Korumburra. Larter will be working in the South Gippsland region in March and April 2015.

Background and aim.

General practices in Leongatha, Foster and Korumburra have provided a Sunday service to their communities for many years. While stakeholders are committed to ensuring that these communities continue to have access to a GP on Sundays, practices report an increasing workload and the potential for burnout. Stakeholders are looking to collaborate to find ways to sustain Sunday services into the future.

The project aims to sustain community access to primary care medical services on Sundays by creating a model for the region that considers the needs and preferences of the community, general practices, hospitals and ambulance services.

Project phases.

After working with Gippsland Medicare Local to confirm the project scope and agree on a communication and engagement strategy, Larter will contact all stakeholders to arrange consultation meetings.

Consult with stakeholders and draft a collaborative model

Larter will consult with the three general practices, South Gippsland Hospital, Gippsland Southern Health Service and Ambulance Victoria’s regional manager to explore how a collaborative after hours model could work.

To develop a draft model, Larter will:

  • Consider hospital presentation trends at each hospital in the region on Sundays and comparing these with trends in other regional hospitals
  • Investigate alternative models and provide recommendations that help inform the new model
  • Consider the impacts of the new model on the community, including during peak holiday seasons
  • Identify the potential benefits and challenges of this new model
  • Test the proposed model with health service stakeholders and address any concerns

We will then prepare a report on the findings of the consultations and a recommended collaborative after hours model for the region that considers key governance, financial and operational elements and a plan to inform local communities.

Present model to stakeholders 

Larter will present the draft model to stakeholders at a workshop convened by the Gippsland Medicare Local on 13 April 2015. The Medicare Local and Larter will facilitate a discussion about the model and next steps.

Key contact.

Please contact Peter Larter, Director at Larter on 0402 125 567 or peter@larter.com.au if you would like to hear more or be involved with this project.

Read more about Larter’s team and how we work towards a stronger primary health system.

Image credit: theilr via Flickr Creative Commons