The Primary Care Partnership Program Logic 2013-2017 identifies client and community empowerment as a key domain for PCP activity, and for consumers, carers and community members to be meaningfully involved in decision making about health planning, care and treatment and the wellbeing of themselves and the community.

The importance of community, consumer and carer participation has always been recognised by the North East Primary Care Partnership (NEPCP) and its predecessors Banyule Nillumbik Primary Care Alliance and North Central Primary Care Partnership. This is evidenced by their Consumer Charter and the training program they completed to support their members with skilling staff to understand and improve community, consumer and carer participation in their agencies in 2003.

NEPCP has taken the position that community, consumer and carer participation occurs at the agency level, and the role for the PCP is in supporting agencies in this effort. The North East PCP Community, Consumer & Carer Participation Mapping Report was the first step in understanding what work was being done around consumer participation by agencies, and to garner ideas on gaps and potential partnership work.

From this report the following action plan has been formulated and approved by the Governance Group.

1. Establish a Consumer Participation Community of Practice for the catchment.

2. Use and promote the NEPCP website as a repository for consumer participation resources including

a. Existing resources and literature, and

b. Links to training resources

3. Curate knowledge – reviewing literature for best practice in

a. Preparing the workforce effectively for consumer participation

b. Preparing consumers for new roles in participation activities (including review and possible update of the 2003 BNPCA Consumer Participation kit).

c. Gaining executive support for Consumer Participation

d. Maintaining support and development of staff and consumers


In the longer term, and in conjunction with the Community of Practice, the NEPCP to

4. Develop a strategy to promote sharing of consumer expertise and existing consultation processes to prevent consumer participation fatigue.

5. Investigate the viability of shared consumer participation training and resources (including liaison with training bodies and universities).