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A community of practice to support the provision of sexual and reproductive health services to Australian women

The SPHERE Centre of Research Excellence at the Department of General Practice, Monash University has been awarded $1.2 million under the National Health and Medical Research Council Partnerships Project Scheme to establish a community of practice that will support the provision of sexual and reproductive health services to Australian women.

Led by Professor Danielle Mazza, Head of Monash University’s Department of General Practice, the Australian Contraception and Abortion Primary Care Practitioner Support (AusCAPPS) Network will address long-standing barriers to the provision of long-acting reversible contraception and medical termination of pregnancy in Australian primary care, a priority that has been identified by the Australian Government’s National Women’s Health Strategy.

The AusCAPPS Network will drive best practice and evidence-based care by increasing access to much needed practice support, resources, education, training and peer-to-peer support for GPs, practice nurses and pharmacists who are interested in providing these services.

“It is well known that access to the most effective form of contraception for many Australian women is limited due to the low number of health care providers that are trained to provide this service. Similarly, very few GPs in Australia are registered to provide medical abortion, despite its availability on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme,” Professor Mazza says. “We hope to change this by creating a virtual community of practice that can support GPs, practice nurses and pharmacists in the establishment and delivery of these services.”

The AusCAPPS Network has the support of many national and state-based organisations working in primary care and women’s health in Australia. Partner organisations include the Department of Health; the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners; the Royal Australian & New Zealand College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology; the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA); the Australian Practice Nurse Association; the Australian Women’s Health Nurse Association (AWHNA); the Australian Sexual Health Nurse Association; the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, Family Planning Organisations from Victoria, NSW, Tasmania, the Northern Territory, South Australia and Western Australia, Children by Choice from Queensland, Jean Hailes For Women’s Health, Marie Stopes Australia, and Bayer Healthcare.

“The enthusiastic support that we have received from government and many leading organisations in women’s health and primary care is recognition of the important role that the AusCAPPS Network has in addressing known gaps in the delivery of sexual and reproductive health services to Australian women,” Professor Mazza added.


Professor Danielle Mazza, Chief Investigator

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