National Health Reform Agreement summary

The National Health Reform Agreement was entered into by all states, territories and the Commonwealth in August 2011. It sets out the shared intention of the Commonwealth, and state and territory governments to work in partnership to improve health outcomes for all Australians and ensure the sustainability of the Australian health system.

These arrangements aim to deliver a nationally unified and locally controlled health system through:

  • Introducing a number of financial arrangements for the Commonwealth and states and territories in partnership
  • Confirming state and territories' lead role in public health and as system managers for public hospital services
  • Improving patient access to services and public hospital efficiency through the use of activity based funding (ABF) based on a national efficient price
  • Ensuring the sustainability of funding for public hospitals by the Commonwealth providing a share of the efficient growth in public hospital services
  • Improving the transparency of public hospital funding through a National Health Funding Pool
  • Improving local accountability and responsiveness to the needs of communities through the establishment of local hospital networks (LHNs) and Medicare locals
  • New national performance standards and better outcomes for hospital patients.