WAPHA takes a strategic approach to Commissioning that seeks to ensure services meet the health needs of the population and contribute towards service and system improvement and innovation. The Primary Health Networks (PHNs) were established in July 2015, with the objectives of:

  •  increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of medical services for patients, particularly those at risk of poor health outcomes; and
  • improving coordination of care to ensure patients receive the right care in the right place at the right time.

PHNs will work towards achieving these objectives by ensuring through analysis and planning that they have an understanding of the health care needs of their communities by knowing what services are available and help to identify and address the service gaps where needed, including in rural and remote areas, while getting value for money.

What is commissioning?

There are many definitions of commissioning. For WAPHA outcomes based commissioning is the process of putting in place primary health care solutions/services/activities that effectively meet the health needs of the population in the PHN’s region.

Commissioning is at the core of what the PHNs do and is one of our strategic approaches to address the health needs of our regions and to achieve our objectives. It is a complex process which includes:

  • Assessing, analysing and prioritising the local population health and service needs
  • Prioritising health and service needs;
  • Identifying options, outcomes and measures to address these priorities;
  • Specifying outcomes of the services/solutions which will procured/secured;
  • Securing services; and
  • Continually monitoring and evaluating the quality of services, supported by outcome based evaluations that focus on ensuring that the solutions/service/activities have effectively met the health needs of the community.

Our commissioning framework

WAPHA and the PHNs are using the Commonwealth’s Commissioning Framework which ensures alignment and consistency with the Commonwealth processess. The framework diagram below indicates that there is a logical sequential approach to commissioning, however the reality is that it is a lot more complex, with many activities occuring concurrently, and activities coming in and out of the cycle at different times.

Councils and Committees

WAPHA recognises that clinical commissioning and community engagement are vital to ensure that the right services are commissioned with the outcomes that matter, and that those services are delivered to the right people, at the right place, and at the right time.

With this in mind, the metropolitan PHNs have each established a:

  • PHN Council
  • Clinical Commissioning Committee
  • Community Engagement Committee

The Country WA PHN has established a PHN Council, Clinic Commissioning Committee and seven regional Clinical Commissioning Committees. To ensure health outcomes that matter to the community are identified, the Country WA PHN has established regional Stakeholder Reference Groups which consists of the community, carers, consumers and health professionals.

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