What is the Winter Strategy?

The Winter Strategy is a program in which COORDINARE supports general practice teams to lead heightened quality and intensity of care, for a group of patients that clinicians think are at high risk of being unstable, very unwell, or admitted to hospital during the flu season.

The Communicable Diseases Network Australia (CDNA) and NSW Health has identified that those most at risk in the flu season belong to a number of vulnerable groups including:

  • persons aged ≥65 years of age
  • Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander peoples aged 6 months and over
  • people aged 6 months and over who have medical conditions predisposing to severe influenza; such as cardiac disease, chronic respiratory conditions
  • people aged 6 months and over with chronic illness including diabetes mellitus and / or multiple chronic conditions
  • people on multiple medications.

Recent data from both the Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District (ISLHD) and Southern NSW Local Health District (SNSWLHD) has indicated certain geographical areas within our PHN region that have an increase in respiratory exacerbations due to flu like symptoms in emergency departments over the flu season.

These geographical areas include Goulburn Mulwaree, Eurobodalla, Upper Lachlan Shire, and Shellharbour.

By targeting these identified regions, the purpose is to support a population health approach to at risk populations by helping practices choose a model of service delivery, aligned to their capacity and service needs.