community consumer partnership

What is the purpose of the Community and Consumer Partnerships Program?

The overall purpose of the WSLHD Community and Consumer Partnerships program is to improve the quality and safety of healthcare, and to enhance patient-centred care and experience.

When we speak about “patient-centred care” we are referring to the timely and systematic provision of healthcare that is built around the values, preferences and expressed needs of the individual patient. It is evidence-based, and adapted to the individual requiring the care. Patient-centred care is also about listening to the expertise of the patient who lives with their health condition. It is reflected in the sharing of decision-making moments in the clinical encounter.

Meet the Team

Dr Coralie Wales

Dr. Coralie Wales

I currently work for NSW Health and for seven years have co-designed with Western Sydney community members the Community and Consumer Partnerships program here in Western Sydney. I advocate for consumers to partner with staff members to bring about health system improvements. Previously for NSW Health I examined the usefulness of telehealth and particularly m-Health for people in rural Australia using a co-design methodology.

Before coming to NSW Health I was a counsellor treating people living with chronic pain. That led me to start up Chronic Pain Australia in 2006, whose purpose was to advocate for system changes to reduce the stigma of living with chronic pain. I have studied the contextual and systemic influences on health professionals working with people in pain to conclude that systems can either hinder or help the therapeutic relationship.

Tara Lee

Tara Lee

I have lived in Western Sydney for more than twenty years, but before that I was actually born at Auburn Hospital moons ago.

I became a Western Sydney Local Health District Consumer Representative after my own experience in the health system, with a desire to partner with staff to bring about positive change. I developed a passion for consumer engagement, patient stories, lived experience and co-design and immersed myself in all of it. When the opportunity arose to apply to become the Community and Consumer Partnerships Officer, I took it with both hands.

I have been the Western Sydney Local Health District Community and Consumer Partnerships Officer since 2016. I am very passionate about my work and I am humbled by, and truly appreciate the community members that we work with. I have always had a strong belief in supporting my Western Sydney community.

Spotlight on Consumer Representatives

Fabian Galbraith

Fabian Galbraith

Fabian is passionate about strong systems to support mental health and alcohol and other drug rehabilitation services. He has trained as a Lifeline Counsellor and participated in many partnership activities with WSLHD staff despite the COVID-19 restrictions. He is a member of a number of our Hospital-based Community Councils and his favourite book is Trainspotting.

Les Fenech

Les Fenech

With a strong interest in health supports for older people, Les frequently attends partnership activities with staff to improve quality and safety. He was nominated to join the University of Sydney Clinical Governance team as a Consumer Representative and is enjoying his new role within public health in Western Sydney. Les is a member of the WSLHD Consumer Council and his favourite movie is Star Wars.

Staff Champions

Without staff champions we don’t have consumer partnerships. The section features (only some) of the wonderful staff members who enthusiastically engaged with Consumer Representatives during 2019 and 2020. They aim to understand the consumer experience in order to improve WSLHD services.


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