The Nursing Assignment | Professional Identity in Health care Delivery


Workshop 2 (Week 2): The Healthcare System
In this workshop you will:
 Be introduced to Australia’s healthcare system
 Consider funding models in Australia and the role of Medicare
 Be introduced to some resources of Australia’s health
 Develop strategies for effective teamwork.
 Develop academic skills for your essay for this enquiry.
1. Introduction to Australia’s healthcare system (30 minutes)
In preparation for week 2 you watched the mini-lecture on Australia’s healthcare system by Dr Charne Miller. In this video Australia’s healthcare system, its primary care, secondary care and tertiary (or hospital) care components were introduced. A health system is ‘all the activities whose primary purpose is to promote, restore and/or maintain health’ (WHO, 2103a; AIHW, 2014). Australia’s healthcare system includes three systems referred to as primary care, secondary care and tertiary (or hospital) care. Primary care is typically the first point of contact within the healthcare system (or the gateway to secondary/tertiary care). Services provided as part of primary care are based in a community setting (or outside hospital system). Primary care services do not require referral to access. Services include GPs, dental, community health services, and pharmacists (AIHW, 2014). Secondary care include medical care specifically provided by a specialist or facility upon referral from primary care e.g., a GP. As such services provided through secondary care includes acute and specialist medical practices (AIHW, 2014), for example, endocrinologist, cardiologist, geriatrician, and pathology services. Tertiary care (or hospitals) include both public and private sectors and incorporate emergency department presentations as well as elective and non-elective medical or surgical treatment (AIHW, 2014). A glossary of additional healthcare terms has been made available for you on the IPP Enquiry 1 LMS site.

Activity 1: Reflection on the Australia’s Healthcare System Mini-Lecture (10 minutes)
In your teams, consider the following questions:
1. What key messages did you take from the mini-lecture?
2. What was new information for you about Australia’s healthcare system?
3. What questions did it raise for you about Australia’s healthcare system?
4. Where do you see La Trobe students from the health disciplines working in this system both initially and in subsequent years?
Activity 2: Healthcare System Brainstorm (10 minutes)
In your teams, please;
1. List some health services that you are aware of in Australia,
2. Classify these services into primary, secondary and tertiary services, and
3. Thinking about the ‘Enquiry’ scenario, consider if the High Risk Foot Clinic is a primary, secondary or tertiary service.


The journey to becoming a practicing healthcare profession is long and winding. It is eventful, stressing and requires commitment, but it is also rewarding especially in realms of personal and professional fulfilment. However, at the apex, the question “Whom am I?” still lingers as every profession asks about what and who. The process of seeking answers to this question creates identify crisis. Identity is an individual’s professional self-concept based on their attributes, beliefs, motives, and experiences (Yazdannik, Yekta & Soltani, 2012). It inspires self-confidence, and helps individuals to find purpose of their professional existence. Professional identity in some sectors like healthcare sector is of great importance considering the need to adhere to professionalism.