When it comes to preventative health, there are a few services available at our Medical Centres. If you're not sure what they are and their benefits, we aim to clear the air and explain each service offering.
Preventative health is really about keeping you as healthy as possible for as long as possible. Through assessments and tests, you can better understand your risk of developing long-term health issues. Finding problems early means that your chances for effective treatment are increased. Many factors, such as your age, health, family history and lifestyle choices, impact on how often you need check-ups.
1. Some general tips for staying healthy
The two areas that can make a difference, no matter what age you are, is eating well and staying active.
Eating well is about ensuring you eat the right types of foods at the right quantity for you. You can understand what a healthy plate of food looks like, how to calculate your daily energy requirements and how to keep an eye on your weight in our article: "Health Matters - eat your way to good health."
Staying active through physical activity helps us to achieve a healthy weight and helps reduce our risk of developing long-term illnesses. Including moderate level of activity and muscle strengthening exercises weekly can improve our blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels, which helps to reduce our risk of heart disease and diabetes, as well as certain cancers. Learn more by reading: "Health Matters - move your way to good health."
2. Book a regular health-check
It is a good idea to visit a doctor regularly, especially if you feel healthy. When you're healthy, it is easier to maintain that level. So don't avoid seeing a doctor because you feel fine.
The purpose of these visits is to:
check for current or emerging medical problems
assess your risk of future medical issues
prompt you to maintain a healthy lifestyle
Having a health check is also a time to examine your lifestyle to see what improvements can be made. This may be something you regularly do yourself or discuss with a healthcare professional.
3. Create a plan
Once you understand your current health levels and risk factors, we would encourage you set goals for the year. Then, most importantly, create a plan for you to hit those goals. Whether this is the types of food you will eat and setting yourself a target for the number of exercises you complete in a week, make sure that you set goals that are difficult to achieve but not impossible.
Care plans - what are they?
Through your health-check, your doctor may discuss the need for a Care Plan for you. Often, a health-check or health assessment will identify an elevated risk of developing a long-term illness. We want to ensure that you optimise your level of health. Therefore, your doctor may ask you to arrange an appointment with a nurse for a Care Plan.
Care Plan's help people with risk of developing or have been diagnosed with chronic medical conditions by providing an organised approach to care. It is a plan of action that:
identifies your health and care needs;
sets out the services to be provided by your GP; and
lists the actions you can take to help manage your condition.
To support you, the Care Plan may include services and treatments from other health or care providers. This multidisciplinary care will help coordinate more effectively the support you need from your GP and other health or care providers.
Some of these costs may also be covered by Medicare.
For example, if you are referred to an allied health service, up to 5 sessions will be partially or fully covered by Medicare (depending on the service) – as long as these services are provided within the following 12 months.
The types of services covered include:
Aboriginal Health Services
Review your Care Plan
Once a Care Plan is in place, it should be regularly reviewed by your GP and nurse. This is an important part of the planning cycle, where you, your GP and your nurse can:
check that your goals are being met
provide support and guidance on how to meet your goals