Local health service providers and community members joined forces with rural and remote health researchers and the national data agencies in Canberra on 2-3 September 2014.
Everyone had a contribution to make on how to frame research questions that will really make a difference to rural and remote health and wellbeing – and how to deliver on the research. In short, ensuring that the evidence we gain from local success stories is robust enough to drive improvements to health policy and practice across the country.
The critical link between health research findings and the national health data sets used to monitor frontline health service delivery, health outcomes and ultimately to shape national health policy was also explored.
The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), Medicare and the National Health Performance Authority all contribute to data collection and/or analysis that forms the basis for decisions about programs and policy approaches by health funders and policy makers.
Representatives of each of these organisations spoke about their roles and use of national data, including the new National Health Survey biomarkers, as the basis for strengthening the relationship between rural and remote health researchers, service providers and the national health data agencies.
The 4th Symposium was auspiced by the Primary Health Care Research & Information Service (PHCRIS), Australian Primary Health Care Research Institute (APHCRI), Australian Rural Health Education Network (ARHEN) and the National Rural Health Alliance (NRHA).