Stabilising the system: Supporting the health sector to manage sustained COVID-19 demand

December 20, 2021

As Victorians ease into the holiday season and enjoy relaxed COVID-19 restrictions, Victoria’s public health system is bracing for a predicted surge in demand.

To help support the sector’s response, the Victorian Healthcare Association today released a white paper Stabilising the system: Supporting Victoria’s public health sector to manage sustained COVID-19 demand.

The paper proposes a series of initiatives to support public and community health services during a period of sustained demand and pressure.

‘Victoria’s health system has been under considerable and sustained stress since the onset of the pandemic,’ VHA CEO Tom Symondson said.

‘However, these challenges have also opened the door to innovation. There is an opportunity to build on these successes to support care delivery in the coming months.’

Guided by sector insights, the VHA has developed immediate, simple solutions in three key areas:

  • Building on innovations from the pandemic
  • Strengthening our whole-of-health-system approach
  • Enabling local responses.

The proposed solutions build on the healthcare system’s strengths and innovations developed as part of its pandemic response, with focus on supporting the system’s workforce, community outreach and connections with other services.

‘It is vital that public and community health services continue to be supported during this sustained period of high demand,’ Mr Symondson said.

‘But we can also take lessons from the pandemic to strengthen the health system going forward. Through the white paper, we hope to generate further innovations and action by government and sector leaders to improve the health of Victorians in the long term.’

Stabilising the system was developed following consultation with VHA members, including CEOs, executives and board members from public health and community health services across the state. Members highlighted areas of concern, as well as opportunities to support care delivery.

These valuable member insights have been supported by an analysis of journal articles, studies and case examples from Victorian, national and international health services.


Read Stabilising the system: Supporting Victoria’s public health sector to manage sustained COVID-19 demand and the related Stabilising the system: State Budget briefing 2022-23.