Tackling health system sustainability is a pressing concern of many developed countries and requires a multi-dimensional, collaborative approach. It requires sensitivity to local context and an inclusive, rigorous research style if behaviour and policy change are to occur and endure.
The research approach taken by this Partnership Centre was guided by the NHMRC’s request for applications, informed by a thought leaders think tank and refined by extensive engagement with Lead Investigators and System Partners. A unique Knowledge to Action approach is being utilised to maximise the likelihood of promising research findings being translated rapidly into practice.
Success on all the ‘fronts’ required to improve health system sustainability will not be achieved within a year or even within the term of this grant. However, at the end of the five-year term of the Grant we expect nine major impacts as a consequence of the activities contained within our work plan, mapped to each of our eight Research Areas:
We anticipate nine major impacts (mapped to each Research Area) as a consequence of the activities of the Partnership Centre:
- demonstrated the effect of information sharing and electronic records on diagnostic testing, and therapy decisions (RA 1.1);
- tested and implemented successful data analytic tools that identify and manage chronically ill patients at high risk, and that improve the quality and efficiency of health services and hospitals (RA 1.2);
- influenced the adoption of cost-effective and clinically significant models for telehealth in Australia (RA 1.3);
- prioritised the main sources of wastage and low value care in the Australian health system and understood the relative contribution of different sources of inappropriate care and variation to the growth in volume of care per case (RA 2.1)
- quantified aspects of resource wastage—and have started to identify and implement solutions (RA 2.1)
- identified promising alternative care delivery models (lower cost locations, providers and processes) and evaluated the potential for system gains in different contexts of care: e.g. in Primary care settings, Hospitals, Aged Care (RA 2.2)
- gained a more detailed understanding of whether, and to what extent, funding mechanisms can reduce waste and encourage high value care in Australian health care settings (RA 3.1)
- demonstrated important aspects of behaviour change amongst clinicians, consumers and policymakers that embraces uptake of cost-effective care recommendations, and articulated the mechanisms for achieving this, e.g. competition (RAs 3.2, 3.3, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3)
- established an overarching legacy, across all Research Areas, which aligns with our aim to produce impact such that we leave a sustainable program of work and workforce (research and implementation capacity) that adapts and continues to serve the health system (PC-wide).