Planning for healthy rural futures
The health sector is essential to a stable, functioning economy in rural and remote communities.
Rural primary and hospital care are anchor institution within the community, as they are unlikely to leave an area in tough economic times as they are economically and culturally connected to the place where they are situated.
As a result, health and hospital services are regarded as economic stabilisers, helping to control economic volatility, create employment and contribute to improved social and health outcomes.
Health planning therefore needs to encompass both health and related benefits and impacts, and be integrated into community based planning and development for the true opportunities of health to be realised as a social, economic and environmental level.