CESPHN Primary Health Awards: 2023 Finalists and Winners announced

At a packed event last night at the Hazelhurst Arts Centre in Gymea, CESPHN held its annual Primary Health Awards. CESPHN’s multicultural community was reflected in our numerous and diverse submissions. All immensely impressive.

The winners, announced at the awards event, received:

Our judges emerged with the following finalists and winners in each of the four categories, plus a ‘special mention’ podcast winner:

Excellence in General Practice 

Winner: Belmore Medical Services

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Belmore Medical (run by Faisal Rifi, Lana Rifi, Dr Jamal Rifi and Shaza Rifi – pictured from left to right above) is a community hub and continues to be a bulk billing clinic in line with its priority to enable access for local socio economically disadvantage communities. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Belmore Medical went above and beyond.

At a time when there was a lot of misinformation and a lack of translated information, Dr Rifi co-ordinated a joint statement of 25 Arabic speaking specialists and GPs in Arabic and English encouraging vaccination. This was published in Arabic newspapers and mainstream media. Dr Rifi had a regular column in the Daily Telegraph and appeared frequently on television and social media.

While many practices were closing their doors, Belmore Medical kept its doors open to existing and new patients. They increased staff from 12 to 80 and increased operating hours in response.

They established three drive-through vaccination clinics by building community partnerships, such as with Canterbury Bankstown council and Canterbury Bankstown Leagues club at Belmore sports ground. Across the three vaccination clinics they administered over 37,000 vaccines. 


  • Bethany Medical Centre (in gallery below)

  • Earlwood Medical Centre (in gallery below)

Excellence in Aboriginal Health and Wellbeing Achievement

Winner: La Perouse Local Aboriginal Land Council

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This is a place-based social and emotional wellbeing programme that offers dedicated staff who provide holistic care and case management support to members of the La Perouse Aboriginal community who are experiencing or suffering challenging times. They work to address the social determinants of health as well as provide early intervention and facilitation of access to culturally appropriate clinical services if needed, and offer cultural safety and support to clients. Winners pictured above (from left to right – Corey Ella (SoM Team youth health and wellbeing Team Leader), Baylee Liddell (SoM Team youth health and wellbeing coordinator), Cohen Horwood (SoM Team youth health and wellbeing coordinator) and Carrine Liddell)

Finalists (Unable to attend)  

  • Babana 
  • Tribal Warrior 

Excellence in Allied Health Practice  

Winner: Erin Brown, Montefiore Aged Care Facility

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Erin Brown (pictured on RHS above with Montefiore Allied Health general manager, Henry Chien) is an oral health therapist providing an essential in-house dental service at Montefiore Residential Aged Care. Oral health among RACF residents is poorer than it is among the elderly in the general community. Recently with the addition of a portable dental unit, Erin now provides a full range of dental services in the comfort of a consumer’s room. This overcomes many barriers to accessing dental health treatment, particularly for frail residents and those with dementia, further reducing risk of the complications of unattended dental care. Erin’s initiatives have led to reduced mouth disease and sensitivity, better nutrition and improved confidence.  


  • Centre for Eye Health (in gallery below)
  • Christine Tang-Pearce (in gallery below)

Special Mention Podcast Award (in gallery below)

  • Jacinta Frawley Werger – Ovarian Cancer Awareness Podcast. 

Excellence in Community Service Delivery 

Winner: Independent Community Living Australia

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The Prevention and Recovery Centre promotes early intervention and recovery for people with lived experience of complex mental health challenges delivered in partnership between Independent Community Living Australia (ICLA) and South East Sydney Mental Health Services. People with these diagnoses can live well in the community when they have the right mix of services, including psychosocial rehabilitation and support.


  • Vicki Papageorgopoulos, Headspace Camperdown (in gallery below)

  • Just4Blokes, Activus Transport  (in gallery below)

Sponsors Website Cesphn 2