The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) has set out its vision for how Australia’s healthcare system should operate in 2020 and beyond.
RACGP President Dr Harry Nespolon re-launched the RACGP’s Vision for general practice and a sustainable healthcare system (“the Vision”) at GP19 in Adelaide today.
The original Vision was released at GP15 and has been significantly revised following widespread interest from GPs, policy makers and stakeholders.
Dr Nespolon said that the Vision was developed by GPs for GPs.
“The Vision has been developed by specialist general practitioners because they are the health professionals with the dual roles of providing whole-of-person care and acting as stewards for the rest of the health system.
“GPs have their finger on the pulse in identifying where the health system isn’t working to meet the health needs of all Australians.”
Dr Nespolon said that The Vision was a seminal document for the RACGP.
“It’s a framework for excellence in patient-centred healthcare which aims to address the many challenges faced by GPs and general practices.
“Too often we focus on what is wrong with our healthcare system without providing alternatives for how it could be improved. This re-launch provides strong solutions for improving patient care in all communities.”
Dr Nespolon said that Medicare was designed to treat acute illness, not prevent it.
“If our health sector is to cope with an ageing population and increasing rates of complex and chronic conditions, we need to do things differently. General practice is the most efficient part of the healthcare system so it’s vital we get this right.
“The six core principles underpinning the Vision include the provision of patient-centred, high quality and accessible healthcare.
“There are many benefits in re-oreintating the system and supporting care in this way. Implementation of the RACGP’s Vision will see reduced health system costs and increased economic productivity.”
Dr Nespolon said that the increased investment in general practice will undoubtedly reduce the prevalence of low urgency emergency presentations and preventable hospital admissions, resulting in a savings of up to $4.5 billion.
“The adoption of our Vision and a well-resourced general practice sector is critical in addressing the challenges facing patients, funders and providers, now and well into the future.”