Minister for Health, Tanya Plibersek, today released the report of the McKeon Review - Strategic Review of Health and Medical Research – Better Health through Research.
Pacific Strategy Partners worked with Mr Simon McKeon and a distinguished panel to conduct a major independent review of health and medical research in Australia.
While senior business executives and company directors are very comfortable considering the external environment when they develop strategy, new Pacific Strategy Executive Director Christian Zahra, makes the point that a critical external factor – government and public policy – is too often either ignored or given inadequate attention in the strategy development process.
Productivity and effectiveness, not just more resources, are the key levers for improving the Australian public hospital system. The relative performance of private and public hospitals provides further evidence that public hospitals are the major underperforming component of the Australian system.
Pacific Strategy Partners has been involved in the NSW Government review of the current performance of health and medical research, with recommendations for a strategic plan for the next ten years.
Despite the comprehensive NHHRC review little seems to have changed in the health debate. While its goals were laudable, we seem to be sliding inexorably into a consensus that its all about more money, despite evidence that pumping cash into an unreformed system is doomed to fail.
Reforming health is hard, and will only be delivered by thousands of initiatives to drive performance improvement not big ideas or spin. Done right using management tools common in other sectors, this can deliver improved health outcomes with no increase in delivery costs.
We commend the National Health and Hospitals Reform Commission (NHHRC) for producing a comprehensive review of the issues and options facing the Australian health system. While we support the overarching themes of the report, we would like to provide feedback on selected reform directions.
The Australian Government commissioned a Review to examine the impact of the Wills Review on the Health & Medical Research (HMR) sector in Australia. Eight members of the Pacific Strategy team were key members of an integrated secretariat team that applied the fact based problem solving discipline to the issues confronting the Review.
Investment in health and medical research generates significant returns both in terms of health benefits - longevity and increased quality of life for Australians; and economic benefits through increased knowledge-based jobs and economic activity.
At the end of 2003, the Federal Government established a committee to review funding for health and medical research in Australia.