PHN Commissioning Resources

Page last updated: 27 February 2017

A distinguishing feature of Primary Health Networks (PHNs) is that they will adopt a commissioning approach to procuring medical and health care services. In 2015-16, the Department of Health (the Department) provided guidance, resources and training for PHNs to support them in undertaking their commissioning role. The intention is that these resources will grow over time as a result of input from PHNs – tools they have used, resources that they have found helpful, and their experiences in the commissioning cycle. These resources are not intended to be prescriptive.

Key materials include:

PHN Needs Assessment Guide

The PHN Needs Assessment Guide (December 2015) has been developed by the Department to support PHNs in planning and undertaking a needs assessment process that will identify and analyse health and service needs within their regions and prioritise activity to address those needs.

Literature and evidence review

The purpose of the literature and evidence review ‘Challenges and lessons for good practice: Review of the history and development of health service commissioning’ (March 2016) was to identify the key features of commissioning systems, highlighting best practice as well as key challenges and risks. The King's Fund undertook the research and main authorship, with additional local Australian context and content provided by The University of Melbourne, as part of a project undertaken for the Department by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

Literature and Evidence Review (Word 361 KB)
Literature and Evidence Review (PDF 1546 KB)

PHN Planning in a commissioning environment

‘Planning in a commissioning environment – a Guide’ provides a general overview of issues and outlines some of the characteristics that may be particular to planning by PHNs in a commissioning environment. The guide is accompanied by a compendium of resources that may be of use to PHNs in planning. The intention is to progressively build this resource base, drawing on PHN practice, in order to provide a solid foundation for future PHN planning. These documents were developed by the Department and PwC as part of a project funded by the Department to develop guidance for PHNs on commissioning.

PHN Planning in a commissioning environment – a Guide (Word 1253 KB)
PHN Planning in a commissioning environment – a Guide (PDF 1983 KB)

PHN Planning in a commissioning environment – Resources (Word 1411 KB)
PHN Planning in a commissioning environment – Resources (PDF 1684 KB)

PHN Designing and Contracting Services Guidance

The PHN Designing and Contracting Services Guidance was developed by the Department and PwC as part of a project funded by the Department to develop guidance for PHNs on commissioning. This document provides guidance about some key considerations in designing and contracting services, including a designing/contracting toolbox.

PHN Designing and Contracting Services Guidance (Word 2448 KB)
PHN Designing and Contracting Services Guidance (PDF 3528 KB)

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