Edge Radio Australia - Community Focus Interview featuring Dr Darren Webb from PHC

by Dr Darren Webb (Precision Health Coaching)


Elevating Health and Wellness Coaching: A Vital Solution to Australia's GP Shortage

by Dr Darren Webb (Precision Health Coaching)

In recent years Australia has faced a significant challenge in the sustainable delivery of medical health services to an increasingly in-need population. Factors such as population growth, ageing demographics, and rural healthcare disparities have exacerbated this issue, leading to longer wait times for appointments and overburdened medical services.


Prolonged excessive stress on healthcare systems encompassing primary care (GP) clinics, hospitals, and specialists, creates further challenges for the industry that strives to maintain the physical and mental health of our nation. As doctors are the frontline warriors safeguarding public health, diagnosing ailments, and administering treatments, they need to be given every opportunity to work within an environment that promotes not only the practice of good medicine, but the capacity for effective practitioner wellbeing.


GPs leaving in record numbers
Following the release of the Royal Australian College of General Practitioner (RACGP)’s Health of the Nation report in November 2023, College President Dr Nicole Higgins called it “very sober reading.” Key findings indicate that almost a third (29%) of practicing GPs are looking to retire within the next five years, a level that prior to 2022, fluctuated between 14% and 18%. This concerning trend of doctors retiring at a faster rate than new medical officers are being trained poses a real threat to public health. Ultimately, this translates to reduced access to quality care, increased strain on remaining medical professionals and potentially a rise in adverse patient outcomes.


Dr Higgins said the report highlights the urgent need for effective ways to attract and retain GPs well into the future, as doctors find themselves spending more time per patient than ever before, in part due to the growing complexity of patient needs. As anyone within the health system will attest, the role of a doctor is one of considerable educational and personal investment and as such represents a valuable commodity of our health system. Therefore, GPs need to be protected from factors driving them from the industry.


Health and Wellness Coaching as a silver lining
Amidst this growing healthcare staffing crisis, there does exist a promising solution that could alleviate some of the strain on the traditional healthcare system while promoting holistic wellbeing: Health and wellness coaching.


Health and wellness coaching is a rapidly expanding field that focuses on empowering individuals to take charge of their health through personalised guidance, support, and accountability. Coaches work collaboratively with clients to identify their health goals, develop actionable plans, and navigate obstacles along the way. Unlike traditional healthcare services, which often prioritise treating symptoms rather than addressing root causes, health coaching takes a proactive approach by emphasising preventive care, lifestyle modifications, and sustainable behaviour change.

A global Health and Wellness Coaching standard in Australia
HCANZA is the leading body for Health & Wellness Coaches (H&W Coaches) in Australia and New Zealand. Its internationally recognised standards ensure quality training, and a scope of practice that is aligned with similar professional bodies in the USA, UK, Ireland, and Canada. Well regarded within these countries, H&W Coaches already work collaboratively with other healthcare providers to ensure a holistic and coordinated care team approach to an individual’s health care.

With GPs facing overwhelming caseloads and time constraints, they often lack the resources to provide extensive education and support for addressing lifestyle-related issues influenced by nutrition, physical activity, stress management, and sleep hygiene. On the other hand, H&W Coaches specialise in these areas, offering personalised guidance and strategies to optimise health and prevent chronic conditions.


In the intricate web of the Australian healthcare landscape, the role of GPs to facilitate the diagnosis of ailments and administer treatments is indispensable. Therefore, to simultaneously reduce the public health impacts of this decreasing workforce, elevated recognition of accredited H&W Coaches is paramount to protect Australia from a looming healthcare crisis.


Precision Health Coaching (Dr Darren Webb) is passionate about helping you with all aspects of your future health goals. Book your appointment today.

Investing in Your Wellbeing: The Case for Health Goals Amidst Career and Financial Aspirations

by Dr Darren Webb (Precision Health Coaching)

In the pursuit of a fulfilling and successful life, individuals often set ambitious career goals and financial milestones. The drive to climb the corporate ladder or achieve financial stability is deeply ingrained in our society. However, amidst the hustle and bustle of professional and financial aspirations, the importance of setting health goals tends to be overlooked. In this blog post, we will explore why we have career goals and financial goals but often neglect our health goals, and how incorporating the concept of a “health bucket list” can help strike a balance.


Why Career and Financial Goals Take Center Stage
Career and financial goals are readily embraced as they align with societal norms and expectations. The pursuit of a successful career and financial stability is often associated with personal growth, societal recognition, and the ability to provide for oneself and loved ones. These goals are measurable and tangible, making them more accessible for individuals to set and track.


The Oversight of Health Goals
Contrastingly, health goals can seem elusive and abstract. Unlike career and financial goals, the benefits of maintaining good health may not be immediately apparent, leading many to deprioritise them. The lack of a clear roadmap and the intangibility of health-related outcomes contribute to the oversight of setting and achieving health goals.


Understanding the Importance of Health Goals
Our wellbeing is the foundation upon which all other aspects of our lives rest. Without good health, achieving career and financial success becomes an uphill battle. Health goals encompass physical, mental, and emotional aspects, promoting a holistic approach to personal development. Prioritising health is an investment in longevity, vitality, and an enhanced quality of life.

Introducing the Health Bucket List
Just as we create career and financial goals, it’s time to introduce the concept of a “health bucket list.” A health bucket list comprises personal milestones and experiences that contribute to overall wellbeing. This can include fitness achievements, wellness practices, travel destinations, or even personal challenges that promote a healthier lifestyle.

Balancing Career, Financial, and Health Goals
The key is to strike a balance between career, financial, and health goals. While professional and financial success is essential, neglecting health can lead to burnout, stress-related illnesses, and a diminished quality of life. Integrating health goals into the overall life plan ensures a more holistic and sustainable approach to personal development.


In the pursuit of a well-rounded and fulfilling life, it’s crucial to recognise the significance of health goals alongside career and financial aspirations. By introducing the concept of a health bucket list, individuals can create a roadmap for achieving and maintaining optimal wellbeing. Striking a balance between career, financial, and health goals ensures a more harmonious and gratifying life journey. So, at the start of 2024, let’s redefine success to encompass not only professional and financial achievements but also a thriving and resilient state of health.


Precision Health Coaching (Dr Darren Webb) is passionate about helping you with all aspects of your future health goals. Book your appointment today.

Author: Emily Chantiri (Contributed to by Dr Darren Webb)

Publication: Information Age (Australian Computer Society)

Publication Date: 12th October 2023