Reducing Waste and Low-value Care

Waste in health care is the delivery of care or services that do not benefit, or might even harm, patients. The consequence of waste in health care is not just harm to patients who receive unnecessary care but also the opportunity cost to patients who may fail to receive the necessary care.

The overall goal of Research Area 2 is to develop a clear and actionable understanding of the two major components of waste in Australia – Overtreatment/overuse and Sub-optimal care delivery or coordination – and enable the development of appropriate interventions to target the highest priority areas.

Research Area 2.1: Impact of different Sources of Health Care Waste

Research Leads – Professors Paul Glasziou, Rachelle Buchbinder and Jon Karnon

Focus Questions:

  1. What are the main contributors to the growth in “volume of care per case”?
  2. Which of these constitute the highest priority areas of wastage?
  3. What solutions may reduce this in the Australian context and what are the opportunities for disinvestment where interventions do not deliver improved outcomes?

Anticipated Impact:

Prioritised and quantified sources of wastage and low-value care. Identification and implementation of interventions to address these areas of waste.

Research Area 2.2: Lower Cost Delivery of Effective and Appropriate Services

Research Lead – Professors Paul Glasziou and Rachelle Buchbinder

Focus Questions:

  1. What are the possible lower cost locations or processes, and what do we already know about the evidence?
  2. What is the current usage of these best-practice models, and what is the potential for system gain?
  3. What are the promising models but with gaps in evidence?

Anticipated Impact:

Identification and testing of alternative care delivery models to achieve lower cost delivery services.