Sarah Larkins

Abstracts

2 Sustainable Community Participation in Australia

Authors: Amanda Kenny, Virginia Dickson-Swift, Jane Farmer, Sarah Larkins, Karen Carlisle, Helen Hickson

Abstract:

In this presentation, we will focus on the methods of Remote Services Futures (RSF), an evidence-based method of community participation that was developed in Scotland. Using oral health as the focus, we will discuss the ways that RSF can be used to achieve sustainable engagement with stakeholders from various parts of the community. We will describe our findings of using RSF methods to engage with rural communities, including the steps involved and what happened when we asked people about the oral health services that they thought were needed in their community. We found that most community members started by thinking that a public dental clinic was required in every community, which is not a sustainable health service delivery option. Through a series of facilitated workshops, communities were able to discuss and prioritise their needs and develop a costed plan for their community which will ensure sustainable service delivery into the future. Our study highlights the complexities of decision making in rural communities. It is important to ensure that when communities participate in health care planning that the outcomes are practical, feasible and sustainable.

Keywords: community participation, Remote Services Futures, sustainable health planning, rural communities

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1 Community Participation in Health Planning in Australia

Authors: Amanda Kenny, Virginia Dickson-Swift, Jane Farmer, Sarah Larkins, Karen Carlisle, Helen Hickson

Abstract:

Rural ECOH (Engaging Communities in Oral Health) is a collaborative project that connects policy makers, service providers and community members. The aim of the project is to empower community members to determine what is important for their community and to design the services that they need. This three-year project is currently underway in six rural communities across Australia. This study is specifically focused on Remote Services Futures (RSF), an evidence-based method of community participation that was developed in Scotland. The findings highlight the complexities of community participation in health service planning. We assumed that people living in rural communities would welcome participation in oral health planning and engage with their community to discuss these issues. We found that to understand the relationships between community members and health service providers, it was essential to identify the formal and informal community leaders and to engage stakeholders from the various community governance structures. Our study highlights the sometimes ‘messiness’ of decision making in rural communities as well as ways to ensure that community members have the training and practical skills necessary to participate in community decision making.

Keywords: Health Planning, community participation, rural ECOH, Remote Services Futures

Procedia PDF Downloads 379