COVID-19: Perceptions of a Primary Health Network in Australia
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The Covid-19 pandemic is still current but has been particularly well addressed, so far, in the Australian context. This article presents an analysis of management practice to describe the experience of one Primary Health Network (PHN) and its approach and response to the pandemic within its geographical region in accordance with Federal government directives. The PHN is a large geographic area that includes the Central Coast, just north of the Sydney basin, the Newcastle and Hunter Valley region and the Northwest/New England region that extends from Tamworth to the Queensland Border.
The article describes the PHN function within its primary healthcare role (PHC) in respect to responding to national initiatives to address and reduce the impact Of the Covid-19 event. The article recounts the Federal Governments directive described through the ‘National Cabinet’ and the Federal Health Department and the PHN response to those directives and initiatives. The article also recounts the actual cases of Covid-19 over the period of the epidemic.
The article describes the governance, leadership, and management initiatives. The article then describes the PHN approach to evaluation of its approach from the perspective of general practice and other PHC providers as well as providing perspectives from governance, management, and staff. The evaluation process identified significant impacts on providers and strong support for the continuation of telehealth measures. There were positive responses to the PHN activity and as a strong sense of trusted information, ongoing education, and general engagement.
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