Mersey Community Hospital delivering for community


The Australian National Audit Office's (ANAO) has found that Tasmania has consistently met its obligations under funding agreements for the Mersey Community Hospital.

The ANAO's Final Report which follows a performance audit into the Mersey Community Hospital found that the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) was meeting its obligations under the 2008 and 2011 Heads of Agreement.

In the majority of cases clinical services are either meeting or exceeding established national targets.

In particular, the emergency department, elective surgery, inpatient management and the High Dependency Unit are performing strongly against national benchmarks.

The ANAO made five recommendations in the final report, three of which related to the DHHS.

Three recommendations have been accepted directed at the DHHS to strengthen processes to guide hospital operations and improve transparency of expenditure reporting.

Taken together, the three recommendations will allow greater scrutiny of financial, clinical and the safety and quality of services at the Mersey.

DHHS takes very seriously transparency of expenditure reporting, and (as is noted by the ANAO at Paragraph 5.31 of the  Final Audit Report) has already taken steps to address the issues raised.

While the Mersey Community Hospital operates as part of the Tasmanian Health system, it has been owned by the Commonwealth since November 2007 and operated and managed by the Tasmanian Government since September 2008.

In 2012, The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) commenced an audit to look into the hospital's management, operation and funding.

This is the first audit conducted by the ANAO using the amendments to the Auditor-General Act 1997 which allows the Auditor-General to audit Australian Government funded, state-run partnerships, such as the Mersey.

The report is available on the ANAO website here.

The latest performance measurements for the Mersey Community Hospital are in the DHHS Progress chart here.