One of the most important and challenging features of regional commissioning is governance. The North Coast Collective is still firming up its governance as we head towards time horizon 2. We started with a memorandum of understanding between Healthy North Coast (delivering the PHN program), Mid North Coast Local Health District (LHD) and Northern NSW LHD.
Our 2019 workshop
In October 2019, Healthy North Coast facilitated a governance workshop to identify the underlying vision, principles and responsibilities of the North Coast Collective. The workshop included representatives from all partners (CEOs and board chairs), the Aboriginal Medical Service and the NGO sector. There was agreement that all parties where initially working towards a shared commissioning strategy, with the ultimate goal an overarching governance model for shared commissioning at a regional level.
Proposed governance structure
Our proposed governance framework recognises the important role of a portfolio approach in achieving overall population health outcomes, but also recognises the responsibilities each partner has to their funders and communities.
It recognises regional ownership of health priorities and outcomes, but also clearly articulates accountability at the appropriate levels. Importantly, it calls out the intent to work as ‘one system’ despite the structural silos and barriers in place. This priority is in line with intent from both the Australian Government Department of Health (National Health Reform Agreement) and the NSW Ministry of Health, through the development of the NSW Joint Statement.
As part of this journey, we are working towards a final agreement on a governance model.