Making general practices sustainable

Primary Health Network CEO Richard Nankervis

The Hunter New England and Central Coast Primary Health Network (HNECC PHN) has launched The General Practice Sustainability and Viability Initiative (SAVI), leading a fundamental shift towards a sustainable and thriving primary healthcare sector.

General practice viability has been an area of concern nationwide due to rising costs and increased wages, impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and both clinical and non-clinical workforce shortage.

Through SAVI, every general practice across the HNECC region will have the opportunity to gain key insights into their business, unveiling their strengths and areas for improvement.

General practices will be able to access relevant support and resources to boost performance across finance, workforce and operational areas.

Through SAVI’s free and interactive platform general practices can access predictive analytics to empower practice owners and managers to identify risks and opportunities so they can make informed decisions crucial for business viability and sustained success.

Chief Executive Officer Richard Nankervis said the PHN’s response to general practice viability was highlighted in the ambitions outlined in the 2023-2028 Strategic Plan.

“At the heart of our commitment to healthcare excellence lies the Sustainability and Viability Initiative, a transformative approach that redefines and supports the notion of a thriving general practice,” he said.

“Viability isn’t merely financial; it encapsulates our ability to evolve amidst the ever-changing healthcare landscape, delivering unwavering quality care while ensuring operational efficiency.

“Sustainability, signifies the enduring dedication to meeting the needs of our patients now and in the future, anchored in a foundation of community engagement.

“Our view is that general practices should not just be viable – that is be able to meet the basic business needs and continue to exist – but rather should be sustainable – able to meet the health care needs of the patient population over the long term as well as considering the wellbeing and capacity of practice staff.

“In being sustainable general practices will be better prepared to weather changes and adapt, all of which improves and secures access to care for our communities.”

SAVI is being launched this month and the objective is to stabilise and enhance general practice services throughout the Hunter, New England and Central Coast, to ensure that by 2028, no general practices close for reasons due to sustainability and viability.

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