Central and Eastern Sydney Primary and Community Health Cohort

Project Number

Project Status

Chief Investigators & Other Investigators
A/Prof Elizabeth Comino, A/Prof Elizabeth Harris, A/Prof Ben Harris-Roxas, Ms Deb Donnelly, Ms Katherine Clinch, Mr Tony Jackson, Ms Jude Page, Professor Mark Harris, Ms Rachael Kearns, Ms Heidi Welberry, Mr Liam Shanahan

Other Team Members
Greg Stewart, Lou-Anne Blunden, Jane Graham, Kimberley Thomsett, Susan Sharpe, Jean-Frederic Levesque, Jamie Hallen, Margo Barr, Fiona Blyth, Ngairie Buchanan, Michael Moore, Katherine Clinch, Susan Schatt, Tully Rose, Martin Kennedy & Litsa Morfis


The availability of a population based sample provides an opportunity for the two local health districts and the primary health network to understand the needs of the local population and to make informed decisions about local care needs, policies and service developments, and evaluate the impact of local interventions.


1. To establish a de-identified linked dataset - the 45 and Up: Primary and Community Health Cohort which will support health services research and evaluation allowing decision makers to better understand their community’s health care needs.

2. To undertake research and evaluation of questions of particular interest to participating organisations in relation to access to primary and community health care and its impact on health service use.

3. To investigate the relationship between health service use and personal characteristics, health outcomes, and to examine how these relationships vary according to a range of sociodemographic, lifestyle and health related characteristics over time

Design and Method

Recruitment and baseline survey occurred between 2006 and 2009 and a follow up questionnaire between 2012 to 2015.  The 45 and Up data will be linked to administrative datasets including New South Wales Admitted Patient Data Collection (APDC), New South Wales Emergency Department Data Collection (EDDC), Mental Health Ambulatory Data collection (MH-AMB) NSW Mortality data (Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages (RBDM) death registrations and Cause of Death Unit Record File (COD URF), the New South Wales Central Cancer Registry (NSW CCR), by the Centre for Health Record linkage (CHeReL) using probabilistic linkage.  45 and Up data is linked using deterministic linkage to Medicare Australia data (Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS)/Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) by the Department of Human Services using a unique identification number and provided by the Sax Institute.

The research will require ethics committee approval and approval from the various data custodians.  The 45 and up study already has participant consent for linkage.

Analysis is conducted within the secure environment of the Sax Institute’s SURE workspace. The outcome variables include:

i. Primary care

a. GP attendance

b. Continuity of primary care provider

c. Use of primary care and diagnostic services

d. Medication use

ii. Secondary care

a. First admission to hospital

b. Number of ED visits and hospital admissions

c. Total days in hospital

d. Cause-specific hospitalisation- including falls, stroke, heart failure, diabetes

e. Hospital readmission

iii. Interface/integration of care

a. Access to integrated care

b. Time to follow up by GP following discharge from hospital

c. Continuity and coordination of care