Health and workforce


Advocacy and policy development:

Australia’s health system is amongst the best in the world. We have the sixth highest life expectancy among OECD countries and achieve good outcomes efficiently (Health at a glance 2015). A key component of our system is a quality workforce of skilled, capable health professionals. The majority of these are educated in Australian universities and Universities Australia (UA) undertakes a health policy and advocacy role to support the sector in this work. Since 2012 UA has been advised in this activity by its discipline-specific Health Professionals’ Education Standing Group (HPESG) which comprises senior leaders across all university health professional disciplines. Given the role of the jurisdictions in health, UA has now also established a Health Education Workforce Group (HEWG) to work with HPESG and UA on State and Territory clinical training matters. 

 
UA’s health policy and advocacy work involves working closely with many stakeholders across different portfolios, tiers of government, professional bodies and a range of other agencies. Core activities include:
• Meetings with HPESG and HEWG to attain input into UA health policy and advocacy issues
• Developing sector positions and relevant policy submissions
• Regular meetings with government, the departments and stakeholders to advocate for and represent the sector’s views. 

A critical and ongoing focus of UA’s health policy and advocacy work is clinical education and training – and especially clinical placements. Current and planned UA activities in this area include:
• Working closely with the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA) regarding the potential introduction of Activity Based Funding (ABF) for teaching Training and Research (TTR)
• Developing a sector position on clinical education and training, including placement costs
• Working to expand capacity for clinical placements including in the private sector
• Working to ensure quality, standards and innovation in clinical education 

To support the broader context of health within which universities operate, UA also participates in the Australian Health Promoting Universities Network (AHPUN) – an initiative of the Universities of Sydney and Western Sydney and endorsed by UA’s Chair, Professor Barney Glover.

For further information about UA’s health policy and advocacy please contact Rachel Yates, Policy Director Health and Workforce.

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