The invitation to apply (ITA) process to become a GP Super Clinic was described in the GP Super Clinics National Program Guide 2008, and notification about consultations occurred through direct contact, media and notices on the websites. The processes for each ITA and for assessment of applications were transparent and appeared to have complied with principles of sound public administration.
4.7.1 Consultation in GP Super Clinic LocationsCommunity consultations were undertaken in each of the identified GP Super Clinics locations, mainly but not exclusively through public forums.2 The purpose of the consultations as articulated in the GP Super Clinics National Program Guide 2008 was to:
- Share with the wider community the Commonwealth Government’s intentions in investing in that community by establishing a GP Super Clinic
- Provide a forum at which the Commonwealth Government could gather the views of local health professionals and the wider community on the health needs and service priorities for the GP Super Clinic and also identify specific local issues that may impact on the implementation of the initiative
- Provide general information on application and funding processes for that particular GP Super Clinic locality
- Define, where applicable, what state or Territory contribution (if any) would also be available for that locality
4.7.2 Assessment Panels for GP Super ClinicsAssessment panels were established for each of the GP Super Clinics localities. The panels were made up of experts with a range of skills relevant to the GP Super Clinics Program, including a GP adviser on all assessment panels. The panels met to assess the applications resulting from the ITAs. Each panel received training, including training on issues related to probity in the process for assessment prior to the rating the applications. Comprehensive tools to support effective probity briefings were developed for consistency, and these have the potential to be used in similar grants programs. The assessment was based on capacity to achieve the GP Super Clinics Program objectives, the capacity of the proposed building to support the model of care, meet regulatory requirements and sustain financial viability, and on the use of information technology (IT).
2 GP Super Clinics National Program Guide. . Canberra: Australian Government: Department of Health and Ageing; 2008.