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Health Navigators guide Tasmanians through the healthcare system

Health Navigators guide Tasmanians through the healthcare system

A new St Lukes Health Navigation service is helping demystify the state’s healthcare system, putting Tasmanians on the right track to better health and wellbeing.

St Lukes Chief Health Officer Luke Cameron said the organisation understood that members often found the health system so complex, they simply didn’t know where to start.

“This is the case whether you’re well and looking for proactive advice to stay that way, have a health concern and are investigating screening options, or have received a diagnosis and are exploring possible courses of treatment,” Mr Cameron said.

“To address this issue in a proactive, positive way, we’re providing St Lukes members and the community free access to our Health Navigators who specialise in navigating the healthcare system.

“Our Heath Navigators are non-clinical professionals, complementing people’s relationships with their primary treating practitioners.”

The latest Primary Health Tasmania Needs Assessment Report 2022-2025 sparked the idea for the service, revealing that most people enter the health system through their GPs, with the average Tasmanian seeing their doctor seven times a year.

But with an ageing population, increasingly complex health issues, GPs strained by heavy workloads, and the need for early intervention to keep people out of hospital, St Lukes is perfectly positioned to play a role in helping people find the information they need to get well, or stay well.

Health Navigation service user Madeleine Maloney said she went in to discuss a range of health concerns, and came out with practical ideas, solutions, and a plan for the way forward.

“It was a huge relief. Confidential, competent, we did research on the spot and the health navigator followed up with links and references after the session,” Madeleine said.

“It’s a very generous offer. I spent an hour one-on-one with someone interested in health, there was no hard sell, just a genuine conversation based on navigating health systems that are complicated, and getting more complicated.

“We have an excellent GP, but doctors are overworked. This service is an amazing example of the change and collaboration that St Lukes is driving for. Take it up, I guarantee it will be useful!”

Anyone can access the free service at St Lukes’ Hobart wellness hub face-to-face, online, or by phone. St Lukes will shortly rollout the service statewide, where it will be especially critical for people in regional communities who have the most challenges accessing healthcare.

“It was important to make this available to everyone – both St Lukes members and the wider public – to progress our vision of making Tasmania the healthiest island on the planet,” Mr Cameron said.

ENDS

More information: Jacquie Ray, Timmins Ray – 0429 683 779 | jacquie@timminsray.com.au