Primary health organisations

Primary health organisations (PHOs) are funded by district health boards to support the provision of essential primary health care services through general practices to those people who are enrolled with the PHO.

PHOs are one vehicle through which the Government’s primary health care objectives articulated through Better, Sooner, More Convenient Primary Health Care are implemented in local communities. PHOs vary widely in size and structure, although all are not-for-profit organisations.

A PHO provides services either directly or through its provider members. These services should improve and maintain the health of the entire enrolled PHO population, as well as providing services in the community to restore people’s health when they are unwell. The aim is to ensure GP services are better linked with other primary health services (such as allied health services) to ensure a seamless continuum of care, in particular to better manage long term conditions.