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Fostering Innovation

Fostering Innovation

Harnessing new ideas to deliver the right care

We are committed to delivering well-organised health care as close as possible to home. This supports the cultural, mental, social and physical well-being of our communities.

To achieve this, we must foster and celebrate innovation in health care.

Our Health District is one of the most geographically large and sparsely populated in NSW. Rural and remote residents face unique challenges including social and physical isolation, distance and access to services and socio-economic disadvantage.

Despite significant effort, the life gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people remains unacceptable, and this is a particular responsibility for our Health District with 11 percent of our people identifying as Aboriginal.

These challenges require us to think outside of the square when designing and delivering health services. We are dedicated to harnessing new ideas, new technology and new partnerships to deliver the right care.

We celebrate and foster innovation in a number of ways, through

Our initiatives lead innovation in healthcare

We have a number of initiatives that contribute to how we lead to innovation in healthcare.

Integrated Care

People’s health needs are changing and our health system must adapt. We have an ageing population and a growing number of people living with chronic health conditions. Since 2014, NSW Health has invested $180 million into the Integrated Care Strategy to develop integrated models of care that are more holistic, patient centred and where appropriate, allow people to be cared for closer to home. Our Health District is leading the charge on this new way of looking at providing health care.



We know that taking care of your own health when living outside of big cities and towns can be a challenge for rural people. Long distances to travel to receive care, longer waiting times to see specialists as well as leaving family and friends – sometimes for extended periods of time, all add to the pressure when you’re not well.

Our new Telehealth strategy, recently launched by the NSW Minister for Health, Jillian Skinner, is helping to relieve the stress by using technology to assist patients to more easily look after their health and keep well. Check out some of the ways we are innovating new models of care with Telehealth and technology.

The Future Health Leaders Advisory Group to the Local Health District

The Future Health Leaders Advisory Group (FHLAG) is a group of early career health professionals who share a passion for equitable access to health care and health workforce opportunities in Western NSW LHD. FHLAG members come from a variety of clinical and non-clinical roles in the LHD.

The FHLAG committee meet bi-monthly with the Chief Executive, the Executive Leadership Team and other local and state-wide managers and leaders in NSW Health. FHLAG meetings occur at various locations across Western NSW LHD to better understand local challenges in health care delivery and advocate for innovative ideas in healthcare on behalf of the local workforce.

The goal of FHLAG is to listen to local challenges in healthcare, including challenges in workforce and culture, Aboriginal health and wellbeing, and operational issues and advocate to the Executive to influence decision making. For more information please contact: WNSWLHD-FutureHealthLeaders@health.nsw.gov.au.

The ‘Living Well Together’ strategy

The Living Well Toge​ther strategy guides how Western NSW Local Health District provides care to our community. It is about consistency, accountability and sustainability in service delivery and patient care.

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Living Well Together Health and Innovation Awards

Living Well Together is the philosophy of our organisation that supports our commitment to the cultural, mental, social and physical well-being of our staff and our communities. Living Well Together for us is about consistency, accountability and sustainability in service delivery and patient care.

The Living Well Together Health and Innovation Awards aim to celebrate and acknowledge innovation and passion in our Health District to improve the health of our people.

In 2016 we are taking the Awards to a new dimension. We recognise that innovation and passion should be rewarded and recognised and so we have:

  • Focused on embedding a focus on Quality and Innovation across the whole organisation during May 2016;
  • Presented all Awards submissions virtually, via video link at various sites across the Health District;
  • Engaged motivational speakers to address the organisation and;
  • Hosted a Gala Awards Dinner with a guest speaker on 31 May 2016 in Orange.

Congratulations to all winners of the Living Well Together Health and Innovation awards for 2016.

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Celebrating our success

Our Local Health District has been recognised for innovation and excellence in healthcare delivery in a number of forums. Aside, from O​ur Awards, we have been recognised in the following ways:

  • Winning the HETI Rural Research Award for a research project on Autism. As described by Social Worker, Catherine Bourke, “While this project will have relevance to the Health District in which it was conducted, it has a wider applicability to rural health services with limited access to paediatric services. The findings will be of value to rural health services and communities throughout the state and country.”
  • Receiving the NSW Health Secretary’s Award for Aboriginal Health at the 2014 NSW Aboriginal Health Awards “Empowering Aboriginal Women to access Colposcopy and Gynaecology Services in Rural and Remote NSW” project. This culturally appropriate nurse-led service improves access to care for Aboriginal women in rural and remote NSW.
  • Achieving the State Secretary for Health Award for Integrated Care at the 2014 ACI Innovation Awards for the Healthy Kids Bus Stop project. This project is a community-based, collaborative and integrated care partnership between Royal Far West, Western NSW Local Health District, Western NSW & Far West Medicare Local, and Ronald McDonald House Charities to address the gaps in child health needs in rural NSW.

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Partnering in innovation with the NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation

The NSW Agency for Clinical Innovation (ACI)  works with clinicians, consumers and managers to design and promote better healthcare for NSW.

Rural Innovations Changing Healthcare Forum 2016

This state-wide Forum was ‘virtual’ in design, linking 18 satellite hubs via video conference for a day showcasing innovative rural models of care which have potential for broader implementation, to share lessons learned, and increase collaboration across rural health sectors. You can view the presentations  from the day for more information.

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