Exposure Draft of the White Paper

White Paper

Exposure Draft of the White Paper

The Exposure Draft of the White Paper outlines a series of proposals that taken together will help to deliver better health outcomes to the Tasmanian community that will deliver improved safety and quality of services, greater efficiency and improved patient support to enable better access to services.

Redesign of the health system will ensure that we spend the existing health dollar more efficiently. This will free up existing funds that will allow us to:

  • Address gaps in health services in our local communities
  • Enable the treatment of more people meaning reduced waiting times for access to treatment and reduced waiting lists, and
  • Direct health spending, and activity, towards the interventions that are shown by evidence to provide the greatest benefit to patients and the community.

This stage of the reform process focusses heavily on our four major acute hospitals and ensuring that each facility is working to its defined role in the system. This does not discount the role and importance of the other parts of the health system- rather it is an acknowledgement of the persistent issues that Tasmania has faced in the delivery of acute hospital services.

It is clear that the division of Tasmania's acute health service into three distinct management structures has been a barrier to our hospitals working together to deliver optimal care for all Tasmanians. This has led to safety and quality issues in some areas, duplication of services resulting in inefficiencies, identifiable service gaps and higher costs that limit our ability to deliver the range and volume of services that Tasmanians need.

Through the One Health System reforms, a single statewide Tasmanian health service will provide leadership and stewardship of the health system and break down the existing barriers to providing better health services for all Tasmanians. It will have greater accountability for its effectiveness and efficiency, and, importantly, be engaged with the Tasmanian community.

Key changes proposed in the Exposure Draft are designed to:

  • Provide safer health services for patients through the development of a Tasmanian Role Delineation Framework, followed by mapping of services to determine a valid Tasmanian Clinical Service Profile. This process tells us how to configure our services more effectively to provide better outcomes for patients.
  • Build confidence in our hospitals by actively defining their role in the system.
  • Build better surgical service around the State by establishing an elective day surgery centre at the Mersey.
  • Provide more health services across the North and North West where there have been a number of unacceptable service gaps like mental health and geriatrics.
  • Build better, more sustainable services by ensuring there are adequate volumes for high quality, sustainable services. This will mean that some low volume services that are currently spread across multiple sites will be consolidated to a lesser number of sites and others may move interstate.

During the months of April to June 2015, the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) will lead a further round of consultation with key stakeholders on the proposed changes.

This consultation will include a second round of community forums to provide information on the outcomes of consultation to date and to seek comments on the proposed changes.