18 May 2023
WA Primary Health Alliance acknowledges and pays respect to the Traditional Owners and Elders of this country and recognises the significant importance of their cultural heritage, values and beliefs and how these contribute to the positive health and wellbeing of the whole community.
Throughout this newsletter, the term 'Aboriginal' is used to refer to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people, unless stated otherwise.
Strengthening Medicare General Practice Grants Program
Over 88% of eligible practices have now completed Step 1 of the GP Grants process. If your practice is at stage 2 or 3 of applying for a grant, the information below is important to help ensure your application can be processed as quickly as possible.
We encourage practices at this stage to aim for completion of step 2 by Friday 19 May to allow time to prepare your GP Grant Application and Agreement using your newly registered supplier details.
Missing or incomplete information entered within your supplier registration will delay the process of your application. Please follow the instructions in the relevant manual carefully when completing your registration.
If you have registered and had your registration approved, you are able to log into aspire using your email address as your username and a password of your creation and edit all fields except your bank account details. We encourage practices to review the details entered against the required fields in the manuals provided.
Practices should click on the link to “Create Response” found at
the bottom of the notification email from ASPIRE to complete
their online Application and Grant Agreement
within the ASPIRE system.
Practices should refer to the GP Grant:
Application Process Manual to help them complete
Need more help?
The GP Grants Support Team is offering dedicated 20-minute sessions to practices that are currently completing:
Please contact Practice Assist on 1800 2 ASSIST (1800 2 277 478) or email firstname.lastname@example.org to book a time with the team.
As part of the Australia Government’s Strengthening Medicare – General Practice Grants Program, one-off grants of $25,000, $35,000 or $50,000 will be available to eligible* general practices to make improvements to expand patient access and support safe, and accessible, quality primary care.
Since the 24 April launch, WAPHA has contacted all eligible Medicare general practices about the GP Grants Program to confirm their intent to apply.
If your practice is eligible to receive a GP Grant and you have not been contacted by WAPHA via the GPgrants@wapha.org.au address, please contact the Practice Assist team on 1800 2 ASSIST (1800 2 277 478) or via GPgrants@wapha.org.au
This involves three steps that eligible practices must complete.
For more information on the GP Grants Program visit the Practice Assist website.
*Medicare general practices, and ACCHS that deliver general practice services and are not owned or operated by a state, territory or local government agency or body. Please note eligible ACCHS will be able to apply for the GP Grants through the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation (NACCHO).
Primary Sense Update
Is your practice one of the over 70% of eligible practices that now have Primary Sense installed as your clinical decision support, population health management and data extraction tool?
Designed by GPs, data experts, and researchers, Primary Sense extracts de-identified general practice data and uses evidence-based algorithms to provide GPs with real-time medication alerts, reports, and patient-care prompts. It also provides general practice, and Primary Health Networks (PHNs) with on-demand reporting to help with population health management.
Using the resources found on the Practice Assist Primary Sense information page, all members of your practice team can get started today!
If your practice has yet to complete your installation, we encourage you to make contact no later than the end of May 2023 to progress to the final stages and ensure there is no disruption to your PIP QI submissions and payments.
For further support, please connect with your local WA Primary Health Alliance Primary Care Navigator or Quality Improvement Coach via Practice Assist.
Feature - Cultural Awareness & Reconciliation Week
Every year on 26 May, National Sorry Day remembers and acknowledges the mistreatment of Aboriginal people who were forcibly removed from their families and communities. It is estimated that as many as 1 in 3 Aboriginal children were taken between 1910 and the 1970s, affecting most Aboriginal communities in Australia. These children are referred to as the ‘Stolen Generations’.
Stolen Generations survivors individually have their own painful lived experiences of removal and trauma from effects like living in institutions, being placed in non-Aboriginal homes and being trained to be domestic servants and stockmen for unpaid labour. Children were refused access to their family and culture. The broken cultural, spiritual and family ties affected (and continues to affect) the health and wellbeing of parents and children involved, as well as their broader communities.
Practices should ensure staff are aware of the considerations that should be taken for Aboriginal patients who have been affected.
Healing Foundation GP Fact Sheet, Working with the Stolen Generations: understanding trauma.
For support available to patients in WA, see the Healing Foundation, Support.
National Reconciliation Week (NRW) is a time for all Australians to learn about our shared histories, cultures, and achievements, and to explore how each of us can contribute to achieving reconciliation in Australia.
General Practice can play an active role in supporting reconciliation, which ultimately benefits both the practice and Aboriginal patients.
The WA Health video the Journey of Health and Wellbeing connects our shared histories and the experience of Aboriginal people in the past to the impact in the present, to offer a pathway for our journey together to improve health and wellbeing.
Posters and resources are available through Reconciliation Australia.
Print ready posters and resources are available here.
See more information about reconciliation and National Reconciliation Week in the multilingual languages on the Translated Resources page.
Colour-in pages are available for the younger generation within your practice and can be found here.
Cultural safety is the “outcome of education that enables safe services to be defined as safe by those who receive the service”. It is based on the experience of the recipient of care and involves the effective care of a person from another culture. “Cultural safety is determined by Aboriginal individuals, families and communities.
In WA, 88,693 people identified as Aboriginal in the 2021 Census, an increase of 12,706 (17%) on the 2016 census. While about half of the growth is due to demographic change (births, deaths, and migration), the remaining change is driven by Aboriginal people choosing to identify when completing the Census.
In 2021, 5,644 more people in WA chose to identify as Aboriginal in the Census than in 2016. This non-demographic change was highest for children between 5 and 14 years old, as reported by the head of the household completing the Census.
A person's decision to identify as Aboriginal may change across their life course. Reasons are complex, but might relate to cultural safety, experiences of racism and discrimination, portrayal of Aboriginal people and communities in the media and the impact of colonisation, policies, and legislation. The reinforcement of harmful practices, histories and ideologies through data may also lead people to choose not to identify.
Reconciliation Week is a great opportunity to highlight the newly released WA Primary Health Alliance (WAPHA) Aboriginal Health Strategy and Cultural Competency and Capability Framework . The development of these strategies along with WAPHA’s Reconciliation Action Plan demonstrate our commitment to prioritising the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal people. This includes increasing access to culturally safe services, a continuous quality improvement approach to commissioning services and supporting general practice to meet the health and wellbeing needs of Aboriginal people and communities.
Driven by the Quintuple Aim for Healthcare Improvement, our Cultural Competency Framework will inform future consultation with primary care providers to support the delivery of culturally safe and appropriate services that improve patient experience, engagement and health outcomes. We envisage beginning this consultation in 2024, however, we will engage with any practice who wishes to investigate this area of quality improvement at any time.
Our aligned Aboriginal Health Strategy recognises the role of general practice in the prevention, early intervention, management and treatment of health conditions and referral to specialist services including commissioned services. Underpinned by key principles that orient our commissioned services around general practice, the Strategy recognises that Aboriginal health is holistic and includes the physical, social, emotional, and cultural wellbeing of the whole community. WAPHA is committed to enabling general practice to inform service design to ensure their role is elevated and integrated where possible. This includes both GPs and whole of general practice care team, including practice nurses and Aboriginal Health workers.
National Sorry Day is coming up on 26 May and is held on this date each year to remember, acknowledge and recognise members of the Stolen Generations.
This year for National Sorry Day, WA Primary Health Alliance will be hosting a keynote presentation by Rosemary Wanganeen on Aboriginal Griefology.
Aboriginal Griefologist, Rosemary Wanganeen is a proud South Australian Aboriginal woman with cultural ties to Kaurna people of the Adelaide Plains and Wirangu of the West Coast of SA. She is a sought-after keynote presenter on Griefology.
Her Stolen Generation experiences led her to developing an innovative and unique model, the Seven Phases to Integrating Loss & Grief.
This event will provide cultural insights and assist practice staff with a greater understanding of how to support Aboriginal patients who are experiencing loss and grief in a culturally safe way.
The Commonwealths supply of the Moderna Bivalent BA.1 vaccine is nearing depletion and expiry. Soon, you will not be able to order or administer this vaccine product. The last order window opened last Saturday 13 May 2023 and closes at 11.59pm on Friday 19 May 2023, for a requested delivery date of Friday 2 June 2023.
The Moderna Bivalent BA.1 vaccine is no longer being manufactured and has been superseded by the Moderna Bivalent BA.4-5 pre-filled syringe vaccine which officially became available for administrations on 3 April 2023. Pfizer Bivalent BA.1 (grey cap) and Pfizer Bivalent BA.4-5 (grey cap) vaccines will also continue to be available as a COVID-19 booster dose for people who are eligible.
A reminder that the Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care is funding WA Primary Health Alliance to reimburse general practices for the provision of COVID-19 vaccinations for patients who do not hold a Medicare card or are ineligible for Medicare. This funding has been extended into 2023.
Practices can be reimbursed to the rebate value of the relevant MBS item number to support non-Medicare patients being vaccinated against COVID-19. Reimbursement can be backdated to January 2023. For further information, contact Practice Assist or to make a claim please complete the survey and submit invoices to email@example.com
Note: To claim, practices will be required to declare reimbursement (i.e. private fee charge) has not already been received for the services claimed.
Immunisation providers are reminded to provide government-funded vaccines for eligible individuals as listed on the WA Immunisation Schedule. As usual, high-risk cohorts can receive the vaccination for free at any time during the winter flu season.
For persons who are ineligible to receive a government-funded influenza vaccine, including interstate/international visitors and those without a Medicare card, participating providers may claim for reimbursement of privately purchased influenza vaccines administered.
Immunisation providers may not use a vaccine provided by WA Health (ordered from Onelink) for the Free influenza vaccine in May 2023 program.
Privately purchased stock should be used for those not eligible for NIP or WA state-funded influenza vaccine.
Further information on the Free influenza vaccine in May 2023 program can be found here.
The “Stay well this winter” campaign has now been launched and is available for practice staff to promote the program. Information can be found here.
More information for practices can be found on our Practice Assist website.
NCIRS and the Department of Health and Ageing are monitoring the influenza vaccination coverage for the 2023 influenza season. Data is based on age, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander status and also state/Territory of residence.
Data from NCIRS can be found here
Department of Health and Ageing data can be found here