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Previous Ministers' releases and speeches - The Hon Stuart Robert MP

The Hon Stuart Robert MP
Minister for Veterans' Affairs
Minister for Human Services
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC

Friday, 23 October 2015

Better care for veterans – hospital negotiations

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Stuart Robert, today announced the Government would be introducing a simplified approach to contracting private hospital services that will ensure veterans continue to receive high quality health services while reducing red tape for providers.

“The Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) spends more than $850 million a year on private hospital services for our veterans,” Mr Robert said.

“The reason we are changing the way we purchase these services is threefold – to provide access to the best possible care for veterans, to reduce the administrative burden on hospitals, and to ensure value for public money.

“The new, simplified form of contracting will be open all year round to private hospitals that meet key requirements, such as licencing and accreditation. The only negotiation envisaged will be around fees. I expect industry will welcome this change, as it will significantly reduce the administrative burden of previous tender processes.”

The new arrangements with private hospitals will reflect best-practice purchasing trends in the health sector.

“The process will be improved for everyone and ultimately, the veteran community will benefit in several ways, including a continued focus on providing access to high quality health services through a broad range of private hospitals,” Mr Robert said.

Current contracting arrangements with private hospitals are due to expire on 30 June 2016, but veterans should be reassured that their treatments will continue as normal while the new arrangements are put in place.

DVA consulted widely with the private hospitals sector in the lead-up to the changes. More information about the invitation to provide private hospital services is available on the Austender website (www.tenders.gov.au).

Media enquiries:
Richard Briedis (Minister Robert): 0477 391 174
Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203

Veterans and Veterans Families Counselling Service (VVCS)
can be reached 24 hours a day across Australia for crisis support and free and confidential counselling.
Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 8 8241 4546)