Healthy Outback Communities (HOC)

Healthy Outback Communities (HOC) is a new approach to health and wellbeing for Western Queensland's channel country, and it will be rolled out in the Barcoo Shire in 2024.

HOC will ensure residents have greater access to preventative health and wellness services and it will complement existing local clinics, Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) doctor days, and visiting allied health services.

On Saturday 27 April we were excited to host our very first Healthy Outback Community Day in Windorah, Barcoo Shire.

This important event also marked the official launch of HOC, and it was a wonderful day as Barcoo residents, HOC Alliance partners, and health and community service providers came together.

There were free health checks, wellbeing information, craft activities, raffles and prizes, and a delicious morning tea and lunch!

NRL legend Darius Boyd joined in the activities and shared his wellness journey. Plus, kids of the Barcoo Shire learned circus skills with Flipside Circus and enjoyed games and activities at Kids Adventure Alley, including football toss with Darius.

Thank you to everyone involved in the event, we had:

  • Over 100 people in attendance, with representatives from the HOC Alliance, health and wellbeing services and other key stakeholders including Barcoo Shire Council, Mithaka Aboriginal Corporation and Rural Aid.
  • Over 30 residents from the Barcoo Shire attended the health check stations.

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If you attended the Healthy Outback Community Day in Windorah and had a health check this means you have signed up to the Healthy Outback Club - Well done!

The next step is to make an appointment with a Wellbeing Practitioner via the Virtual Health and Wellbeing Hub (VHWH) to create a Personal Wellbeing Plan that is tailored to your needs.

The VHWH will be ready shortly and we will communicate directly with those that completed a health check and more broadly to the community when it’s up and running.

If you haven’t already, please sign up to the Healthy Outback Club here: 

Join the Healthy Outback Club

  • 21km, 10km, 5km River Run and Bike Ride with lunch ending at the Golf Club
  • Healthy Outback Communities will have health service provider information booths and provide snacks.
  • Event hosted by the Jundah Camel Races and Recreational Club and run in conjunction with the camel race on Saturday 29 June.

More information coming soon.

On average, regional and remote Australians have shorter lives, higher levels of disease and injury, and poorer access to and use of health services, compared with people living in metropolitan areas.  

Western Queensland channel country spans almost 220,000 sq km, equivalent to the size of Victoria, and 13% of the state’s total land area. The 1,100 residents of these communities do not have a locally based doctor or pharmacy. The communities rely heavily on the local nurse, visiting health services and the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

The HOC team will connect residents to locally tailored wellbeing services to support physical, social and emotional wellbeing.

HOC is established by the Western Queensland Primary Health Network and is delivered by: 

  • Barcoo Shire Council
  • Boulia Shire Council
  • Central West Hospital and Health Service
  • CheckUP
  • Health Workforce Queensland
  • Health Consumers Queensland
  • Queensland Reform Office
  • Royal Flying Doctor Service (Queensland Section)
  • Western Queensland Primary Health Network


If you have any questions about Healthy Outback Communities, contact Kathleen O'Hara, Senior Project Advisor, at  and on 0456 001 789.

We welcome your feedback, either compliment, complaint or suggestions for improvement. 

Submit your feedback

Paving our way towards healthier Western Queensland communities.