• 03 MAR 16

    Commissioning: perspectives from the ground

    Healthcare commissioning is a multi-faceted function and requires high levels of technical and managerial skill. Primary Health Networks (PHNs) have been tasked with two key objectives to be achieved through commissioning. According to the authors, public value aims can be achieved by developing operational capability in the context of an authorising environment and will need to focus on system level outcomes from multiple perspectives, including a consumer perspective. The authorising environment will require policymakers to allow time for PHNs to mature into their role and will require an environment of effective collaboration amongst multiple stakeholders, including consumers, where highly competent managers and clinical leadership will need to work in a symbiotic relationship. The authors suggest that although some Medicare Locals demonstrated commissioning capacity and capability, this will need to be scaled up at-pace in the new healthcare landscape in order for PHNs to optimally fulfil their roles.

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    • 03 MAR 16

    A rapid review of the impact of commissioning on service use, quality, outcomes and value for money: implications for Australian policy

    According to the authors several reviews of commissioning in the healthcare sector have been conducted, but there has been limited consideration of commissioning as it might be applied in the Australian health system. A systematic review was undertaken assessing the evidence of the impact of commissioning on health service use, quality, outcomes and value for money and considering the findings in the Australian context. The authors conclude that high-quality nationally standardised performance measures and data requirements need to be built into contracts and ongoing monitoring and evaluation. In Australia, there is significant work to be done in areas of policy and governance, funding systems and incentives, patient enrolment or registration, information systems, individual and organisational capacity, community engagement and experience in commissioning.

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    • 03 MAR 16

    Cochrane and the Joanna Briggs Institute announce new partnership

    Our new corporate member the Joanna Briggs Institute (JBI) and the Cochrane have announced their official partnership aimed at improving the knowledge base for making decisions in healthcare and global health policy.

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    • 03 MAR 16

    Use of Value of Information in Healthcare Decision Making: Exploring Multiple Perspectives

    This paper aims to examine the potential value of VOI, barriers and facilitators and the way forward with the use of VOI in the decision-making process for reimbursement of pharmaceuticals in the Netherlands.

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    • 03 MAR 16

    Developing a Framework for Evaluating the Patient Engagement, Quality, and Safety of Mobile Health Applications

    Rising ownership of smartphones and tablets across social and demographic groups has made mobile applications, or apps, a potentially promising tool for engaging patients in their health care, particularly those with high health care needs. Through a systematic search of iOS (Apple) and Android app stores and an analysis of apps targeting individuals with chronic illnesses, the authors of this paper assessed the degree to which apps are likely to be useful in patient engagement efforts. Usefulness was determined based on the following criteria: description of engagement, relevance to the targeted patient population, consumer ratings and reviews, and most recent app update. Among the 1,046 health care–related, patient-facing applications identified by our search, 43 percent of iOS apps and 27 percent of Android apps appeared likely to be useful. They also developed criteria for evaluating the patient engagement, quality, and safety of mobile apps.

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    • 03 MAR 16

    Your local train station can predict health and death

    An article from The Conversation on studies into the association between life expectancy and postcodes, neighbourhood locations or train stations and how such studies paint a powerful picture of health inequalities across neighbourhoods and cities. They also concisely communicate the importance of social determinants of health. More simply, they tell us that health starts where we live, work, learn and play.

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    • 03 MAR 16

    Optimizing primary care research participation: a comparison of three recruitment methods in data-sharing studies.

    This paper finds three approaches for recruiting practices to data-sharing studies, examining differences in recruitment levels and practice representativeness and concludes researchers should, with appropriate ethical safeguards, consider opt-out recruitment of practices for studies involving anonymized patient data sharing.

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    • 03 MAR 16

    “We’re checking them out”: Indigenous and non-Indigenous research participants’ accounts of deciding to be involved in research

    A paper examining the accounts of Australian Indigenous and non-Indigenous research participants in terms of how and why they agree to take part in research. The insights from this research can lead to research practice that is more respectful and responsive to the needs of Indigenous communities and abides by the values of Indigenous communities and more ethical and respectful research practice for all.

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    • 01 MAR 16

    The George Institute for Global Health gathers international experts for change making forum

    In a major forum hosted by The George Institute for Global Health on 19 February, key health sector thinkers, leaders and change makers from around the world gathered in Sydney to address maximising the impact of research on policy and practise for greater change.

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    • 01 MAR 16

    True blood: cutting through confusion about pathology cuts

    An article from The Conversation by Bruce Baer Arnold A/Prof, School of Law, University of Canberra calling for an informed national discussion about pathology services and health priorities.

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