Issue 41
October 17, 2019
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Collaborative Pairs Australia

The first group of Collaborative Pairs completed their leadership training this year with four pairs completing the program over a six month period. Developed by the King’s Fund in the UK, this program has been rolled out in Australia by Consumers Health Forum and four Primary Health Networks, including us.

The program aims to build the collaborative leadership skills of health professionals and consumers working on a joint project and developing the skills needed to be true partners in the process. The Western Sydney program is expertly facilitated by WentWest Board member Dr Walid Jammal of Hills Family General Practice and consumer Debra Kay.

All participants found the program invaluable for their work and relationships. The feedback from the group has been very positive and each pair worked on a specific project during their time together.

  • Curtis and Rosyln worked together to design a pharmacy layout that "felt like a part of the community" including a consumer-friendly consultation space. They didn’t know what to expect from the program at the start however they have found a "different way of thinking" and "finding our own voice and learning to listen to others".
  • Ian and Sarah spent the collective time to explore the relationship between them to inform their work on developing a Consumer Centric Approach to Commissioning. They found strength in the different perspectives and experiences they brought to the work together.
  • Molly and Nina found the "process to be incredible". Nina learnt how valued you are as a consumer and self-awareness through the program was heightened. Through their work on developing a youth engagement framework for the Western Sydney Local Health Distric, they were able to understand different perspectives, communicate more effectively, navigate through the politics and work towards a shared purpose.
  • Karen and Tracey learnt so much from everyone in the group and learnt to "stop, reflect and challenge yourself". This development has benefitted their collaborative work on the redesign of Paediatric Rehabilitation Services across NSW and they have been able to draw on their new skills to influence others working on this project.

We are seeking interested, enthusiastic consumers and health service providers who would like to work in genuine partnership to lead change and improve services that will improve health and wellbeing outcomes for everyone. Applications for the 2020 Collaborative Pairs program are now open at

The first group of Collaborative Pairs

Webinar: My Health Record for Specialist Practices – Adding Value to Clinical Care
Tuesday 22nd Oct, 1:00pm - 2:00pm
GP Workshop Symptom Management and Palliative Care Services
Tuesday 29th Oct, 6:00pm - 8:30pm
Webinar: My Health Record – Providing Care in the Community
Wednesday 30th Oct, 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Aboriginal Cultural Awareness Training
Tuesday 5th Nov, 6:00pm - 9:30pm

NSW Health Alerts

The NSW Ministry of Health has released two alerts on Measles and Syphilis in Women with more information for GPs. Please distribute these alerts to all relevant staff in your practice.

Help Patients Walk for a Healthy Heart

Heart Foundation Walking is Australia’s largest free walking network. As part of the Western Sydney Diabetes Initiative, the Western Sydney Primary Health Network (WSPHN) is seeking expressions of interest from general practices to establish Walking Groups. This initiative is a component of WSPHN’s commitment to addressing chronic disease prevention and management. For more information please contact Ashleigh Habkouk on 8811 7117 or

Anti-Smoking Youth Photo Competition

Nepean Blue mountains Primary Health Network are running an Instagram Photo Competition for all young people aged 12-25 years in NSW to promote non-smoking and better health. The competition is part of their iChooseFreshAir anti-smoking campaign that is focused on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities who have a higher than average rate of tobacco use. The Competition invites young people to submit a photo based on the theme: what not smoking and choosing fresh air means to you.
For any questions, please contact their Aboriginal Liaison Officer, Mitch Beggs-Mowczan on 4708 8100.

BreastScreen Dates

BreastScreen is free for all women aged 40 years and over, but is especially important for women aged 50-74 years. Appointments can be made by calling 13 20 50. Western Sydney BreastScreen clinics can be found in the following locations:

GP Association Meeting

The following GP Association Meeting is coming up in Western Sydney:

Mount Druitt: Chronic Diarrhoea, Friday 25th October.

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