Primary Health Workforce Needs Assessment
- About the Primary HWNA
- The process
- HWNA reports
Providing an appropriate and sustainable primary health care workforce is most challenging in rural communities. These communities are experiencing inadequate access to comprehensive health care due to factors such as clinician shortage, poor workforce retention and changes to health service facilities.
RDN’s annual Primary Health Workforce Needs Assessment (HWNA) articulates the current state of the primary health workforce in rural NSW to meet current and future community health workforce needs. The HWNA is a critical component of designing and activating activities to improve sustained access to essential primary health care.
The HWNA identifies the major workforce needs and activities to support improvements in three priority areas:
- Access — improving access and continuity of access to essential primary health care
- Quality— building health workforce capability
- Future planning — growing the sustainability of the health workforce
The HWNA is a collaborative process. At all stages of the assessment process RDN engages with the State Health Workforce Stakeholder Group including representatives from:
- Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council (AHMRC)
- NSW Ministry of Health
- GP Synergy (Regional Training Organisation)
- Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM)
- Royal Australian College of General Practice (RACGP)
- Remote Vocational Training Scheme (RVTS)
- Regional Training Hubs
- Primary Health Networks (PHN) with a rural footprint
- NSW Ambulance
and Regional Workforce Stakeholder groups for each PHN:
- PHN representatives
- Local Health Districts (LHDs)
- Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHSs)
- Regional Training Hubs
RDN is deeply grateful for the input from these stakeholder groups in advising and contributing to the development of each HWNA.
RDN also offers sincere thanks to GPs and practice managers who contribute to the annual health workforce surveys and many other rural health professionals that inform the Needs Assessment each year.
RDN submits a full and detailed report of Needs Assessment findings to the Department of Health in February of each year. RDN also produces a public summary document of the approaches and key findings of each Needs Assessment, which can be accessed directly from the links below.
The 2020-21 Primary HWNA Summary Report has reviewed and updated evidence in relation to the wider primary health workforce. It also includes data on emerging issues including natural disasters and emergencies such as the 2020 bushfires and COVID-19, internet connectivity, health workforce capability and predictors of intention to increase or reduce hours of work among GPs. This new research complements and builds on previous Health Workforce Needs Assessments.
The 2019-20 Primary HWNA Summary Report focuses on the health workforce needs of nursing and midwifery professionals working in the rural primary health care context. This new research complements and builds on the 2017-18 General Practitioner (GP) and 2018-19 Allied Health assessments, which are reviewed and updated in this report.
The 2018-19 Primary HWNA Summary Report focuses on the health workforce needs of allied health professionals working in the rural primary health care context and provides an update to the General Practitioner (GP) workforce HWNA Report 2017-18.
The 2017-18 Primary HWNA Summary Report focuses on the health workforce needs of General Practitioners.