Health Improvement Practitioner

Roles available in Westport and Hokitika
Permanent Position
Full-time and part-time applicants considered.
Salary $90,000

The West Coast Primary Health Organisation (PHO) is a not-for-profit community trust that plans, coordinates, funds and provides primary health care for West Coasters. It is also the network of health practitioners who work out of general practices, rural clinics or medical centres up and down the West Coast. Our mission is to help West Coasters get healthy and stay that way.

We are looking for registered health professionals who have experience in delivering behavioural health services to fill this rewarding role within General Practice, empowering people to reach their mental health and wellbeing goals through brief interventions.

This role is part of New Zealand's new primary care-based behavioural health workforce and the innovative programme Te Tumu Waiora – te reo for “to head towards wellness”. At the heart of the service are two new roles embedded within the general practice team - Health Improvement Practitioners and Health Coaches.

About the role

The Health Improvement Practitioner (HIP) provides evidence-based brief intervention talking therapies to individuals and their whānau to help reconnect them with their values and commit to actions reflective of their health and wellbeing goals. It is a generalist role based within the GP clinic helping people with any issue affecting their wellbeing by providing:

immediate, accessible therapy (particularly Focused Acceptance and Commitment Therapy - FACT) to patients
group programs for patients in partnership with the general practice team
consultation, education, and advice to support members of the general practice team meet the mental health and wellbeing needs of their patients.
support local population health by developing intervention pathways alongside GPs and nurses based on clinic needs
Utilise the Te Whare Tapa Whā model of care to ensure collaborative plans are culturally appropriate for any challenges in health and wellbeing.

Successful applicants will receive comprehensive training and ongoing mentoring as part of the national Integrated Primary Mental Health and Addictions programme.

Who we are looking for

A registered health professional with a background in mental health or social work (e.g., psychologist, psychotherapist, DAPAANZ registered Counsellor, Social worker) with a current practicing certificate.
Professional experience in their registered field of a minimum of 3 years.
Has experience working in general practice, primary care and/or community settings.
Qualifications or experience in CBT, ACT or FACT are an advantage but not essential.
Is self-motivated, can work autonomously and collaboratively as part of a team.
Empathetic and open-minded with excellent communication skills.
Willing to embrace change and up to the challenge of different ways of working.
Ability to work at a fast pace with a flexible schedule in a varied general practice environment.
Demonstrated experience of working within a Te Ao Māori environment and understanding Tikanga Māori, and/or experience working within a bicultural context with diverse communities and/or organisations
Committed to ongoing professional development/education.
Full clean NZ Driver Licence.

If you are interested in this role and the opportunity to grow and be part of an innovative team, apply now. 

Please note that applicants will be required to meet the COVID-19 Public Health Orders as they apply to the West Coast Primary Health Organisation. This means this role must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19.

Applicants for this position should have NZ residency or a valid NZ work visa for at least 12 months and must already be in the country to be considered for this role.

The position description is posted on our website but for an application form, please email Roz Stuart at