New Community Health service plan for Tassie’s East coast

Released on 3rd February 2023

One of Australia’s largest community health services, cohealth is leading a consortium of organisations awarded a grant from the Federal Government to explore how the community health model could support communities on the East Coast of Tasmania. 

Federal Assistant Minister for Rural and Regional Health, Emma McBride, today announced a Primary Care Rural Innovative Multidisciplinary Models (PRIMM) grant that would enable cohealth to work with consortium partners – including Glamorgan Spring Bay Council (GSBC), existing general practices and Health Consumers Tasmania – to co-design a local, integrated, multidisciplinary model of primary care. 

PRIMM grants help rural and remote communities analyse their primary healthcare needs and design models of care that will work for them.   

cohealth provides community-based health and wellbeing services which are available to all, alongside targeted services for vulnerable populations, and has a strong focus on early intervention and prevention and helping people navigate the health system. 

Alongside GPs and nurses, cohealth provides services such as mental health, allied health, drug and alcohol services, disability and dental services to ‘join the dots’ on people’s health problems.  

“cohealth is delighted to be able to bring our capacity in community engagement and service design to support the community to decide how the cohealth model could be applied to improve health service access here in Tasmania,” cohealth Chief Executive Nicole Bartholomeusz. 

“No two communities are the same, so health services should be co-designed with the community and respond to people’s needs.  

“We’ll be working closely with the east coast community to help create a ‘joined up’ community health service that extends beyond general practice to incorporate the health and social services people need,” said Ms Bartholomeusz  

“The PRIMM grant will help us to work with the community to build a service that is better connected and responsive to the needs of clients ,” said GSBC Mayor, Cheryl Arnol. 

“As healthcare practitioners working on the East Coast, we welcome the opportunity provided by this grant to work with cohealth and our community to develop an innovative, sustainable and inclusive primary healthcare service. We hope this will lead to improved access to services and more locally-based healthcare professionals” said Dr Ashton Kelly, a Bicheno-based GP.  

Grant consortium partners are: 

  • cohealth 
  • Glamorgan Spring Bay Council  
  • Bicheno Medical Practice 
  • Triabunna Medical Practice 
  • May Shaw 
  • Swansea General Practice 
  • Primary Health Tasmania 
  • Health Consumers Tasmania. 


more information:  Lanie Harris 0418 552 377 


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More on cohealth: cohealth is one of Australia’s largest not-for-profit community health organisations and strives to improve health and wellbeing for all.  cohealth provides universal access to services as well as targeted programs and assertive models to address the health disparities experienced by disadvantaged groups. cohealth offers a broad range of high quality, integrated health and support services, including medical, oral, pharmacy, mental health and drug and alcohol services. 


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