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Have your say: Needs assessment survey open in northern Queensland

The Northern Queensland Primary Health Network (NQPHN) is calling for community members, healthcare professionals, politicians, and sector representatives to have their say on the health and service needs of the region.

The Joint Regional Needs Assessment (JRNA) survey, which is open for submissions now, is a federal and state government requirement, designed to identify key areas for improvement within the healthcare sector.

The contributions collected by the survey will help to identify the key priorities and service gaps of the region, which will be used to "inform planning and commissioning activities" to improve healthcare access and service delivery for northern Queenslanders.

NQPHN chief Sean Rooney said this collaborative approach is crucial to making the best decisions for the healthcare workforce and service users.

"People's experiences matter and information gathered from the survey will help improve access to better healthcare in North Queensland communities,” Mr Rooney said. 

“We want to learn more about the health needs that are impacting people living and working in North Queensland, and understand where there may be health needs and gaps in services to ultimately improve healthcare resourcing and service delivery.” 

The JRNA will supersede previous Health Needs Assessments (HNA) for the Northern Queensland area and is, for the first time, a collaboration between NQPHN and four Hospital and Health Services from Torres and Cape, Cairns and Hinterland, Townsville and Mackay.

"We are proud to partner with all four Hospital and Health Services in North Queensland on this joint health needs assessment, which we know will help North Queenslanders live happier, healthier, longer lives,” Mr Rooney said.

Townsville Hospital and Health Services chief Kieran Keyes said that a diversity of perspectives is what the sector needs.

“There is no one in a better position to tell us what works and what needs to improve than the communities we serve,” he said. 

“I strongly believe healthcare is better, stronger, and safer when we involve our patients, consumers, and community in the design of our services.   

“I want to encourage all North Queenslanders to have their say to help us work together to shape the region’s future healthcare services.” 

Submit your opinions until 14 July 2024 here.

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