Creating a healthier, better connected Gippsland.

Primary health networks welcome audit

The Victorian and Tasmanian Primary Health Network Alliance (VTPHNA) welcomes the Australian National Audit Office’s report into the effectiveness of the Australian Government Department of Health and Aged Care’s performance management of primary health networks (PHNs).

The audit examined the Department’s compliance and assurance arrangements, performance measurement and reporting for PHNs. It also evaluated the PHN delivery model against its objectives.

Overall, the auditors found the Department was partially effective in this. Public transparency and evaluation were seen as key improvement areas.

The VTPHNA CEOs said the findings highlight a welcome signal for clear measurement and better transparency of the outcome of PHNs’ work in the communities they serve.

“We see this review as timely, given the significant growth in the services delivered by the national network of PHNs in recent years,” they said.

“We believe the audit provides an opportunity to review and strengthen the performance measures to align with key outcomes and expectations.

“PHNs are an established and important part of our primary health system. They support service integration, capacity building and commission services based on the needs of individual communities.”

The audit made 8 recommendations for improvement; the Department agreed to 7 recommendations and agreed in principle to one.

VTPHNA members, like PHNs around the country, look forward to working closely with the Department through a shared commitment to continuous improvement. It is in everyone’s interest that the PHN Program is managed effectively and achieves its objectives.

In particular, the report provides an opportunity to work together to determine the funding solutions that result in highest impact on health outcomes for communities.


Quotes attributable to Gippsland Primary Health Network Chief Executive Officer, Amanda Proposch:


“Gippsland Primary Health Network welcomes the audit report. We have been measuring impact and outcomes as part of our remit since our PHN was established and while we acknowledge some outcomes take years to achieve, we have relentlessly pursued these objectives in our work.

“Our Strategic Plan 2023-2025 heralds a sharpened focus on outcomes that matter to achieve the quintuple aim of a more cost-effective system, which delivers a better patient and provider experience, and improved population health, in a way that advances equity for all.

“Our last two annual reports have been themed around outcomes; there are stories that demonstrate the impact and outcomes of many projects and services.

“Gippsland PHN has a strong track record of commitment to Gippsland and to being accountable. This strong accountability is the anchor enabling the work of the PHN.

“Such strength and accountability enables us to do our job as a PHN. Our standards are unashamedly high to ensure health outcomes and safe, quality care is delivered in Gippsland.

“This strong governance enables decisions in the best interest of the communities in Gippsland including within our role as commissioners of services and in our procurement results.

“Everything we do is for the ultimate benefit of our community as we work towards  our vision of a measurably healthier Gippsland.”


View the report on the Australian National Audit Office website.

Our work is made available on our website at

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