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11 December 2017

HEAL - Helping regional and rural South Australians live healthier lives

A free preventative health initiative is being rolled out across regional and rural South Australia to 
help those who are overweight, at risk of chronic disease or who already have one or more chronic
diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease.

HEAL™  – the Healthy Eating Activity and Lifestyle program – is being delivered by a range of service
providers with support from Country SA PHN through its After Hours Preventative Health grants

HEAL™ aims to empower participants to take responsibility for their individual health by focusing on
behaviour modification principles during an eight-week program. Based on a non-dieting weight
management approach, it aims to change attitudes to dietary fads and gimmicks.

“The long-term objective of HEAL™  is to help patients avoid escalating poor health conditions as
well as preventable hospital admissions,” Country SA PHN CEO Kim Hosking said.

“This is another important preventative health program providing access to quality care in an after-
hours setting. By encouraging positive behaviour change, it will help participants improve their
overall health as well as decreasing risk factors that contribute to chronic conditions.”

The HEAL™  program focuses on nutrition, physical activity and psychology and addresses behaviour
modification and goal setting.

HEAL™  participants are screened by a Registered Nurse or Allied Health Professional pre and post
the program, with follow up at five and 12 months after it has been completed. During the program
participants take part in two-hour sessions held weekly.

To find out whether you are eligible to take part in the HEALTM program, speak to your GP (referral
required). For more information, visit

About HEAL™ 

The HEAL™ program was developed by Macarthur Division of General Practice (MDGP) and has been
conducted in South Western Sydney since 1999. In 2003 the program was expanded to incorporate group
exercise sessions in addition to its group education sessions. In 2010, MDGP and Exercise & Sports Science

Media Inquiries: Kristy Macfarlane, Michels Warren PR on 0402 557 527

Australia (ESSA) became a National Program Grant recipient under the Commonwealth funded Healthy
Communities Initiative to expand and make the HEAL™ program available nationally to allied health
practitioners, health services and Councils in need of accessing a proven, accredited lifestyle modification
program and making it available within community settings.

About Country SA PHN
Country SA PHN is responsible for commissioning Commonwealth directed funding for primary health services
throughout regional South Australia. It is the health network set up to service the country regions of South
Australia, increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery while improving the coordination of
patient care. Established by the Australian Government, we exist to bridge the gap of health inequity and
access in rural South Australia by building a collaborative and responsive health care system. Country SA PHN
covers 99.8% of the state geographically, incorporating approximately 30% of South Australia’s total
population. For more information go to

Media Contact, Michels Warren PR - Kristy Macfarlane 0402 557 527


Beckwith Park, 30 Tanunda Road Nuriootpa SA 5355
PO Box 868 Nuriootpa SA 5355
T 08 8565 8900 F 08 8311 1723
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Country SA PHN gratefully acknowledge the financial and other support from the Australian Government Department of Health