Presented by HC Coombs Policy Forum and the Menzies Centre for Health Policy

International Developments in Health Systems

Friday 3 December 2010, 12 – 2pm workshop with working lunch
CASS Meeting Room 2, Level 3, Beryl Rawson building #13, Ellery Crescent, ANU

This workshop is invitation-only.

The HC Coombs Policy Forum at The Australian National University is organizing a high-level workshop which will focus on current developments in health systems reform in countries such as US, UK, Canada, the Netherlands and Australia. There will be a facilitated discussion on about five topics (listed below). Lead commentary will be by Professor Ted Marmor (an international expert on health systems) and Dr Kieke Okma (also an expert on comparing national health systems with particular interest in Dutch reforms) and also an Australian health official, chaired by Professor Andrew Podger.


The workshop is a working lunch meeting for 2 hours with approx 20 high-level participants from government, academia and other health sector organizations involved in service delivery. Participation is by invitation-only. All discussions will be subject to the Chatham House rule.


Short introduction by Ted Marmor who, having spoken the day before, will make some brief comments about cross-border learning and also about some underlying truths of health system management. Kieke Okma will add some comments on the issue of convergence or 'hybridisation' with reference to common themes amongst disparate contexts; Peter Broadhead (First Assistant Secretary, DoHA) will then update us on the state of play with Australian reforms, emerging issues etc.

Then, Andrew Podger will act as facilitator and Ted and Kieke will lead off on each of the following four topics, which will be discussed for 20-30 minutes each.

  1. How important is having a single (government) funder, in terms of ensuring appropriate care and in terms of cost control etc? How are other federations allocating responsibilities re funding, purchasing, providing health services?
  2. What is the future of primary care and its relationship with acute and long-term care? What models are emerging to integrate care and to manage the financial risks of health systems?
  3. What is needed to get the most from the health workforce as service demand increases and labour supply is squeezed?
  4. Where does private financing fit in today? Co-payments to help control costs? Private insurance to offer choice (and/or help to control costs)?

Background readings

We have attached the following documents by our speakers which you may like to read as a background to the workshop discussions.

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