RACGP: Time to Care Campaign

Corporate and Public Affairs / Government / Media Relations / PR Strategy and Campaigns / Stakeholder Relations

Project: RACGP: Time to Care Campaign




The 2022 federal election provided the RACGP with an opportunity to publicly advocate for much-needed reform to Australia’s primary health care system. The RACGP identified six key achievable funding initiatives to deliver cost-effective and patient-centred care for all Australians while also enhancing the long-term sustainability and high quality of the health system. These reforms were grouped under the campaign banner of Time to Care.


In November 2021, the RACGP engaged Truth to drive a media-led campaign to launch Time to Care to help prompt conversations about primary health care and the role of general practice in the 21st century. Ultimately, the aim was to influence MPs in six key marginal seats to support the asks and push for them to become policy in a new Commonwealth Government post-election.




Truth devised a comprehensive PR plan, refining the Time to Care narrative and key messages, developing a media strategy and implementation plan as well as a stakeholder engagement strategy and digital content development.


The media launch featured exclusives to breakfast television and print featuring local GPs and patient case studies, focused on a different angle of the campaigns. This created a media hook for these individual media stories to report all five asks contained in the Time for Care campaign, and a doorstop alert for RACGP’s President, Dr Karen Price. This was distributed to national metropolitan and regional television, local media, radio, print and digital news and trade outlets.


Highlights of the plan included:


  • Refining the Time to Care narrative and key messaging to a patient-centric focus to improve its reception among the general community and politicians;
  • Garnering intelligence for each electorate on current demography, health issues, political history and current political climate;
  • The identification and briefing of excellent GP and patient case studies in key electorates for media;
  • A four-pronged launch of the Time to Care media relations campaign, with exclusives for Nine Newspapers and ABC TV News Breakfast, followed by a metropolitan media launch, and local/regional media;
  • Development of media releases for individual publications and national distribution.
  • Production of a 6-minute video news release for use by TV networks, repurposed across RACGP’s owned digital channels.
  • Identifying key interest groups in primary care ‘high use’ cohorts such as aged care, mental health, disability peak groups and First Nations in the states where the key electorates are located.
  • Designed and development of a package of Time to Care campaign content in collaboration with RACGP as a shareable toolkit for key stakeholders to distribute to their own networks and owned channels;
  • Developed and implemented an integrated digital communications extension to the campaign, including a social media influencer campaign, from talent identified within the RACGP’s membership network to amplify and extend the messaging of the stakeholder and media outreach (running to end March 2022)




The media results were outstanding, with almost 450 stories (as at January 27, 2022) running across television, radio, digital and print media nationally, to a potential audience reach of 8.4 million (using the analytical tools of RACGP’s media monitoring provider, Streem).


Highlights of results included:


  • Coverage in all Nine (Fairfax) metropolitan papers nationally, focusing in on the election asks and quoting RACGP President, Dr Karen Price;
  • A 5-minute live interview with Dr Price on ABC TV’s high rating national breakfast program, focusing on the threat of GP closures due to funding shortfalls;
  • Follow up print coverage in most News Corp publications nationally;
  • Follow up TV coverage with a 5-minute on Sky News and Sky Regional;
  • Extensive national radio coverage on major and regional commercial and ABC stations; and
  • Local media coverage in all six electorates identified by the RACGP and the campaign being syndicated to major news outlets broadcasting and publishing in each of these electorates.
  • The potential audience reach of these stories is estimated by Streem media monitoring to be around 8.4 million, with greatest proportion of media coverage achieved within the first 12 hours of the launch on 18 January 2022.
  • Media was significantly receptive to the plight of general practice and primary health care over the course of multiple conversations with journalists and senior editorial staff on the day of the launch.


As a direct result, RACGP’s government relations team has seen an unprecedented increase enquiries and requests for briefings from politicians, candidates and advisors in both health and non-health related portfolios and a broad range of electorates.