The diploma is the only one of its kind, developed by NSW/ACT general practice training organisation, GP Synergy in collaboration with TAFE OTEN, to meet the specific needs of practice managers and staff working in Aboriginal medical service facilities.
Many of the graduates were congratulated at a dinner hosted in Dubbo, NSW on Friday night by GP Synergy, together with several others who were recognised for their outstanding contributions to GP training.
“Aboriginal Medical Services often have complex social, cultural, and clinical dimensions that need to be coordinated and work in harmony for successful Aboriginal health service delivery,” says GP Synergy Chief Executive Officer, Mr Oldfield.
“This diploma seeks to improve primary healthcare service delivery for local Aboriginal communities and opportunities for doctors to undertake Aboriginal health training.”
Jamie Newman, Chief Executive Officer from Orange Aboriginal Medical Service, says the diploma is a valuable practice management succession planning platform, with four staff from the service graduating from the 2016 program.
“An element that is significant for our sector is succession, and this diploma affords practice management succession.
“When there is a turnover of staff, we have people who have availed themselves of the diploma and they are automatically available to step in, ensuring continuity of service and continuity of care,” he says.
2016 graduate, Karl Briscoe, former Clinical Services Manager at Galambila Aboriginal Medical Service and now CEO at the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker Association, agrees.
“The continuity of care provided by Aboriginal health workers in Aboriginal Medical Service facilities is paramount and sets them apart other health services,” he says.
“The diploma brings together staff from Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations across NSW/ACT enabling invaluable knowledge transfer between the organisations we represent.”
2016 graduates include staff from Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations across NSW/ACT including Broken Hill, Coffs Harbour, Coonamble, Kempsey, Moree, Newcastle, Nowra, Orange, Tamworth, Walgett and Wyong.
The diploma first commenced in 2015 producing in fourteen graduates and was well accepted. This year twenty participants have graduated. GP Synergy plans to run the program annually.
Awards for excellence in GP training were also presented during the evening. This included:
- GP Synergy Western NSW Registrar of the Year – Dr Hugh Le Lievre, 76 Prince Street Medical, Orange
- GP Synergy Western NSW Supervisor of the Year – Dr Louise Baker, Kendel Street Medical Centre, Cowra
- GP Synergy Western NSW Practice Manager of the Year – Louise Warry, Busby Medical Practice, Bathurst
- GP Synergy Western NSW Employee of the Year – Mr Darren Green, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Education Unit Manager, Dubbo