According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), Australia is among the world’s healthiest countries. This is evident in the country’s dwindling death rates, rising life expectancy, and accessible health care services. Thanks to the country’s health care system, an increasing number of Australians are becoming healthier.
One of the primary reasons to this country’s feat is its primary health care sector. As per the Government of Western Australia Department of Health, the primary health care is a “person’s first point of contact for health services, which are often given outside the hospital system”. This includes services from chiropractors, dietitians and general health practitioners, among others. Moreover, these health care support services and programs are delivered through community health centres that also promote community development and wellness.
Developing Community Health Care Support
According to the Australian Government Productivity Commission, the total outlays in primary and community health was at $30.2 billion in 2013. Through community health care support and services, a comprehensive and accessible point of entry to the health care system was established.
Despite the relatively huge government funding for the development of community health care support, it seems to be not enough as health expenses continue to swell. There are proposed measures on how to improve the country’s health care system, including the primary and community health centres. One of which is the promotion of a reasonable, but competent health insurance sector.
Achieving an Efficient Community Health Care System
In an effort to create an efficient and reliable community health care system, the government established the Medicare Locals. These are primary health care organisations that work out and fund additional community health care services in the country. In addition, they are tasked to see to it that local health services suit the community’s needs. One of the pressing matters that Medicare Locals address is the improvement of the access to community health care. Moreover, they also focus on disease prevention and aim better management of chronic conditions.
The number of health workforce in rural areas is being addressed by the government. In fact, from 112 full-time equivalent (FTE) general practitioners (GPS) per 100,000 population in remote areas, the country now has 134 FTE per 100,000 population. At present, community health centres offer vaccination on children and health programs for women.