Partner or Perish: Narratives from the field about collaboration for reform
Boyer, K and Orpin, P and Walker, JH, Partner or Perish: Narratives from the field about collaboration for reform, 2009 General Practice and Primary Health Care Research Conference Proceedings, 15-17 July 2009, Melbourne EJ (2009) [Conference Extract]
Collaboration between researchers, policy makers, service providers are and community members is critical to the journey of health care reform. Challenges are multifaceted and complex. Partners come with a variety of challenging agendas, value sets and imperatives. and perceive the drivers for reform from different perspectives within an environment of demographic and generational change.
In Tasmania a group of rural health researchers is developing a raft of partnerships with service providers and policy makers across issues and challenges for healthy ageing in rural communities. Understanding and maximising the outcomes of those partnerships in research, service planning and policy terms has been an ongoing learning experience.
Projects for collaboration include:-
*a restricted population study of older people to understand their needs and aspirations
*two 'healthy eating for healthy ageing' studies
*an ARC linkage study on triggers for disengagement for older people and the potential for different types of short-term interventions
The deliberately constructed partnerships across the theme of healthy ageing and the consequent development of service models which are sustainable, flexible across communities and cost effective require significant effort to succeed. A shared understanding of the issues and challenges is a start, but not sufficient for long-term success. The paper charts through narrative the challenges faced by each of the partners, the shared 'management' of strong egos and the recognition of, and respect for, personal and organisational value systems
The projects will lead to improved service models and policy options informed by evidence-based research.