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Innovation is key to hospital capacity and performance

Posted 17 August 2015

Monday 18 August 2015

The Victorian Healthcare Association (VHA) welcomes the long-awaited big picture outlook on Victoria’s health system as outlined in the recommendations of the Travis Review into health system capacity commissioned by the Andrews Government.

In particular, the VHA applauds the Review’s focus on health system innovation and its recognition that innovation needs to be underpinned by long-term commitment and significant resources.

VHA CEO Tom Symondson said that, although individual hospitals and healthcare providers are being innovative and making improvements to the way they deliver care every day on the ground, the current funding model doesn’t do enough to incentivise system-wide innovations.

“We need to encourage, for example, the delivery of care that is safe and appropriate outside of hospital settings within communities, which is often both preferable to the patient and less expensive for the public purse,” Mr Symondson said.

“The Travis Review outlines the benefits of partnerships between hospitals, but there are great gains to be made by expanding this to partnerships between hospitals and community health settings.

“What we don’t want to see is simply patient shifting between hospitals when there are so many clinically appropriate, effective and cost-efficient options for care available.

“What we now need to do is come together as a sector and identify ways we can scale up these improvements so they benefit the whole community.

“And importantly we need to ensure that all the various funding levers to encourage innovation are identified and fully utilised.

“I am absolutely delighted that the Andrews Government has agreed with the Travis Review’s recommendations and will take action to ensure innovation is made a health policy priority in Victoria.”

Mr Symondson said he was looking forward to tackling the challenge with the sector, government and other stakeholders at the Victorian Health Reform Summit on 18 September 2015.

Media contact: Rachel White – 0438 815 561 rachel.white@vha.org.au

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