Comprehensive primary health care in local communities (CPHC)

The Southgate Institute for Health, Society and Equity, in collaboration with other South Australian, interstate and international investigators, conducted a National Health and Medical Research Council funded project to examine ways to assess the effectiveness of Comprehensive Primary Health Care (CPHC) in local communities.

The project was conducted in partnership with six primary health care services. A program logic model for CPHC in Australia, along with site-specific models, were developed, and a suite of evaluation methods including client surveys and workshops, case tracking of clients with diabetes and depression, collection of indicator data, and staff surveys and interviews were conducted at each site to evaluate services against these logic models.

View research ouputs


Primary Health Care Symposia

The Southgate Institute organised a series of policy events to present research findings on primary health care, including from this project, to stimulate discussion on promoting a comprehensive PHC approach in Australia, and to revive the comprehensive vision of primary health care (PHC) set out in the World Health Organization’s Alma-Ata Declaration.

Videos from the Canberra symposium are available here.


Final Briefing Paper

Overarching report on Central Australian Aboriginal Congress

In 2016, a final report was produced detailing the strong model of comprehensive primary health care evinced at one of the project’s case study sites – Central Australian Aboriginal Congress Aboriginal Corporation. Congress is an Aboriginal community controlled health organisation in Alice Springs, Northern Territory. The project found this service had the most comprehensive implementation of primary health care, and this report documents these strengths. The report was funded by Central Australian Aboriginal Congress, and authored by Dr. Pamela Lyon .

The final report is available here (PDF 2MB) .



2016 Briefing paper and project summary

The Southgate Institute has produced a final briefing paper highlighting the key findings from the “Comprehensive Primary Health Care in Local Communities” project (2009-2014).

The research, funded by a $1.5m NHMRC project grant, partnered with seven primary health care services (six in South Australia, and Central Australian Aboriginal Congress in the Northern Territory) for five years, examining their ability to implement comprehensive primary health care. The project was conducted during a period of considerable change in state and Federal primary health care, and the project serves as an examination of the political, funding, and other contextual factors required to support comprehensive primary health care. Professor Fran Baum was the Chief Investigator A on the project and Dr. Toby Freeman was the project manager. 

The briefing paper is available here (PDF 718KB)


 Research Symposium


CPHC Newsletters


Participating sites

  • GP Plus Health Care Centre Marion Primary Health Service
  • GP Plus Super Clinic Noarlunga Primary Health Team
  • Playford Primary Health Care Services and GP Plus Health Care Centre Elizabeth
  • SHine SA
  • Central Australian Aboriginal Congress
  • Aboriginal Health Team, Southern Adelaide Local Health Network


Contact details

If you would like to find out more about this project, or have any comments or questions, please contact Toby Freeman (Project manager):

Phone: (08) 7221 8468

Key Staff

Professor Fran Baum AO

Director, Southgate Institute of Health, Society and Equity


Dr Toby Freeman

Project Manager, Comprehensive Primary Health Care in Local Communities







Dr Sara Javanparast 

Senior Research Fellow, Comprehensive Primary Health Care in Local Communities




  • Tahnia Edwards, Central Australian Aboriginal Congress
  • Prof Ronald Labonte, University of Ottawa
  • A/Prof David Legge, La Trobe University
  • Prof David Sanders, University of the Western Cape
  • Dr Gwyn Jolley
  • Ms Zoe Luz

View associate investigators