National Health Funding Body

The NHFB is part of the Commonwealth Health portfolio. It was a prescribed agency under the previous Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 (and is now a Commonwealth entity under the new Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013). NHFB staff are employed under the Public Service Act 1999.

The Act mandates that the NHFB is independent of both Commonwealth and state/territory governments when assisting the Administrator in the exercise or performance of his functions.

What we do

The principal function of the NHFB is to support the Administrator in the performance of his functions. Those functions are set out in the National Health Reform Agreement (the Agreement) and the Act.

The Administrator is required to:

  • Calculate and advise the Commonwealth Treasurer of the Commonwealth contribution to hospital funding in each state and territory (National Health Reform Act 2011 s.238).
  • Oversee the payment of Commonwealth hospital funding into State Pool Accounts (National Health Reform Act 2011 s.238).
  • Make payments from each State Pool Account in accordance with the directions of the State concerned (common provisions of the National Health Funding Pool legislation in each state and territory).1
  • Monitor state payments into each State Pool Account (common provisions of National Health Funding Pool legislation in each state and territory).2
  • Reconcile estimated and actual service delivery volumes and calculate any necessary payment adjustments so that Commonwealth payments can be adjusted to reflect the actual level of services provided (National Health Reform Act 2011 s.238).
  • Undertake data matching to determine if hospital services otherwise in scope for activity based funding are ineligible for Commonwealth funding because the service has been paid for by the Commonwealth under the Medical Benefits Schedule (MBS) or the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) (Clause A6 of the National Health Reform Agreement).
  • Report publicly on the national health reform funding and payments (National Health Reform Act 2011 s.240).

1 A list of the relevant state/territory legislation containing the common provisions can be found at page 5.

2 As above.

Public Hospital Funding

Table 1 provides an overview of the public hospital funding (including activity based, block and public health funding) for 2013–14 relating to each state and territory.

Table 1: National health reform funding by source — 2013–14

State/territory

Amount paid by state/territory ($’000)

Amount paid by Commonwealth ($’000)

Total funding ($’000)

NSW

6,449,417

4,342,849

10,792,266

VIC

4,481,171

3,483,176

7,964,347

QLD

5,394,654

2,814,967

8,209,622

WA

2,768,835

1,518,400

4,287,236

SA

2,083,070

1,007,904

3,090,974

TAS

635,683

292,447

928,130

ACT

552,438

275,181

827,618

NT

661,393

134,590

795,983

Total

23,026,661

13,869,514

36,896,175

Of the total funding provided by the Commonwealth, states and territories, Figure 1 shows the relative proportions of each funding stream.

Figure 1: National health reform funding streams — 2013–14 proportions

NHFB_fig1

Table 2: National health reform funding and payments — 2013–14

Transaction type

($’000)

Total public hospital funding

36,896,175

Total payments for public hospital services

37,000,111

Total value of transactions processed

73,896,287

The values in Tables 1 and 2 are rounded to the nearest thousand dollars. As such, the figures may not add to the totals shown due to rounding.

Further information on national health reform payments into and out of the National Health Funding Pool and state managed funds, is available in the Administrator’s monthly reports and Annual reports, available at www.publichospitalfunding.gov.au.

Our History

National Health Reform Agreement

In August 2011, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) agreed to major structural reforms to the organisation, funding and delivery of public hospitals. Following the COAG meeting, the Commonwealth and all state and territory governments entered into the Agreement.

Under the Agreement, the Commonwealth, state and territory governments are jointly responsible for funding public hospital services through both activity based and block funding arrangements.

The creation of the Administrator and the NHFB supported the agreed independence and transparency arrangements of the Agreement. These roles incorporate funding determination, administration and reporting.

Transition to establishment

The NHFB commenced operations from 1 July 2012. The (then) Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA) managed the NHFB’s appropriation until it was able to directly receive and manage these arrangements as a stand–alone independent agency.

The NHFB’s transition occurred in two phases:

  • Following a determination under section 24.1 of the Public Service Act 1999 on 3 May 2013 that provided the terms and conditions of employment enabling the NHFB to employ staff in its own right; and
  • Following a determination under section 32 of the Financial Management Act 1997 on 24 June 2013 enabling the NHFB to receive and manage its own appropriation.

The National Health Funding Body Annual Report 2012–13 described the operations of the NHFB in its first year of operation and includes the Financial Statements for the year 1 July 2012 to 30 June 2013. The report is available at: www.nhfb.gov.au.

Our enabling legislation

Our enabling legislation is the National Health Reform Act 2011 (Cwlth) as amended by the National Health Reform Amendment (Administrator and National Funding Body) Act 2012 (Cwlth).

This Commonwealth legislation is supported by common provisions in statutes in each state and territory which create the Administrator’s position and set out their functions:

Table 3: State and territory legislation that supports the National Health Reform Act 2011
Table 3: State and territory legislation that supports the National Health Reform Act 2011

New South Wales

Health Services Act 1997

Victoria

Health (Commonwealth State Funding Arrangements) Act 2012

Queensland

Hospital and Health Boards Act 2011

South Australia

National Health Funding Pool Administration (South Australia) Act 2012

Western Australia

National Health Funding Pool Act 2012

Tasmania

National Health Funding Administration Act 2012

Australian Capital Territory

Health (National Health Funding Pool and Administration) Act 2013

Northern Territory

National Health Funding Pool and Administration (National Uniform Legislation) Act 2012

Who we are

Our workforce

The NHFB has a professional and highly qualified workforce of 18. Five staff members are Certified Practising Accountants, two are Chartered Accountants and a further two hold general accounting qualifications.

Four staff members hold a Master of Business Administration, one holds a PhD in data mining and one a post–graduate qualification in actuarial studies.

We are also a culturally diverse workplace. Our staff come from a range of countries and backgrounds. Our workforce age range spans 25–59 years.

NHFB_team

(From left to right) First row: Bessie Zhou, Peta Hunt, Val Price–Beck, Susan Bateman, Svetlana Angelkoska. Second row: Chao Luo, Beth Gubbins, Heather Grant, Naini Singh.Third row: Andrew Hai, Vincent Lorimer, Kartikay Sharma, Lynton Norris. Not pictured: Gitanjali Kaura, Joanne Krueger, Fiona Lonergan, Nilusha Moses.

Our structure

The NHFB comprises four functional units supporting the Administrator though the CEO.

Figure 2: Structure of the National Health Funding Body

NHFB02779_AR_fig2b

Our Executive

Lynton Norris, Chief Executive Officer

Lynton Norris was appointed as the inaugural CEO of the National Health Funding Body. Mr Norris has over 20 years of experience in government and the private sector. Prior to his appointment to the NHFB, Mr Norris was a senior executive in the Victorian State Government responsible for the budget management and funding arrangements for all Health sector agencies.

Mr Norris has significant experience in public sector finance and policy development, and is a Certified Practising Accountant.

Executive Committee

Our Executive Committee comprises the NHFB Directors and invited experts. The Executive Committee provides the NHFB CEO with strategic advice on policy, direction, and emerging issues.

Our teams

Integrity, Assurance and Resourcing

The Integrity, Assurance and Resourcing unit provides the NHFB with essential business support services including human resources management, internal audit, organisational compliance, procurement and risk management functions.

Human resources functions include the coordination of the selection, training and development, and performance management of NHFB staff.

This unit is responsible for organisational assurance, security, facilities management and records management.

This unit also has responsibility for organisational compliance including preparation and dissemination of required public service agency documentation and meeting the requirements of Senate orders.

NHFB_val

Val Price–Beck has over 20 years public service experience and has managed the corporate areas of several Commonwealth agencies.

Ms Price–Beck has experience in corporate services and related functions. Prior to joining the NHFB Ms Price–Beck worked for a number of years in Indigenous economic development.

Data Modelling and Analysis

The Data Modelling and Analysis unit develops financial models that enable the Administrator to accurately calculate the Commonwealth funding contribution to LHNs. This includes reconciling the estimated and actual service delivery volumes to adjust the Commonwealth funding contribution.

This unit also develops programs and models to determine services eligible for Commonwealth funding.

The unit determines, collects and processes the data required to support this modelling.

Data Modelling and Analysis works collaboratively with the Administrator and all jurisdictions to ensure that modelling and analytics are accurate and well understood by stakeholders.

The unit is responsible for the preparation and publication of the Administrator’s monthly reports that record the Commonwealth, state/territory public hospital funding and payments for the month and year to date, at national, state/territory and LHN levels. These reports are available from: www.publichospitalfunding.gov.au.

Svetlana Angelkoska has extensive experience in analysing, modelling and reporting health and related data. Prior to joining the NHFB, Ms Angelkoska worked for the Commonwealth Department of Health and the Private Health Insurance Administration Council.

Ms Angelkoska holds a Bachelor of Science and a Graduate Certificate of Actuarial Techniques.

Finance and Reporting

The Finance and Reporting unit provides financial services to the Administrator and the Pool. This includes managing the payments system, processing Commonwealth, state/territory deposits and payments into and out of the Pool.

This unit produces the Pool financial statements for auditing by the Auditor–General from each respective state and territory.

Finance and Reporting facilitates the authorisation by the Administrator for payments to LHNs and other providers. Other responsibilities of this unit include the preparation of NHFB financial statements under the Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 (now superseded by the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013) and the strategic financial management of the departmental appropriation for the NHFB.

During 2013–14 this unit actively supported stakeholder management with state/territory Chief Finance Officers (CFOs) through regular jurisdictional CFO committee meetings.

NHFB_naini

Naini Singh has over 13 years federal government experience in implementing strategic budgets, project management, taxation, financial statements and devising quality assurance solutions.

Ms Singh holds a Bachelor of Commence, majoring in Information Systems and Finance, a Postgraduate Certificate in Taxation and is a Certified Practising Accountant. Prior to joining the NHFB, Ms Singh was the Chief Accountant at the Department of Infrastructure.

Policy and Strategy

The Policy and Strategy unit provides strategic policy advice to the NHFB and the Administrator. Responsibilities include researching, developing, monitoring and reviewing current and proposed policy decisions that relate to the functions of the Administrator and the NHFB.

The Policy and Strategy unit develops external policy documentation. This includes the Administrator’s rolling Three Year Data Plan, the associated funding reconciliation framework and policy statements on matters such as growth and funding guarantees, privacy, secrecy and security, and other organisational and strategic documents. These policy statements are developed in consultation with the Commonwealth and states and territories through jurisdictional committees.

This unit is also responsible for writing and/or coordinating briefing material for consideration by inter–jurisdictional committees and the preparation and approval of a range of parliamentary reporting material.

In 2013–14, Policy and Strategy provided secretariat services for the Administrator’s Jurisdictional Advisory Committee and the Reconciliation Advisory Group and was responsible for web content and presentation on the Administrator’s Public Hospital Funding website and the NHFB website:www.publichospitalfunding.gov.au www.nhfb.gov.au.

NHFB_beth

Beth Gubbins has experience in finance and public policy as well as project development, management and delivery. Before joining the NHFB Ms Gubbins worked for the Victorian Department of Health in a number of strategic finance and policy roles.

Ms Gubbins is a Certified Practising Accountant with 15 years public sector experience in Australia and the United Kingdom.

What we aim for

Our Strategic Plan 2013–16 describes the intended direction of our organisation: our vision, mission, values, strategic objectives and key deliverables.

Our Strategic Plan: An Overview

Our Vision

Improved health outcomes for all Australians, sustainability of a nationally unified and locally controlled Australian health system, and increased transparency in public hospital funding.

Our Mission

To support the obligations and responsibilities of the Administrator of the National Health Funding Pool by providing transparent and efficient administration of Commonwealth, state and territory funding of the Australian public hospital system.

Our Values

Our core values underpin our approach and practice when interacting, and collaborating with colleagues, stakeholders and the wider community.

Accountability—to comply with national health reform legislative requirements and the National Health Reform Agreement according to the parameters set.

Collaboration—to maintain effective working relationships with all stakeholders to instil continued confidence.

Integrity—to conduct business and make decisions in a manner, which demonstrates the principles of honesty, consistency, accuracy and ethics.

Leadership—to ensure leadership, effective policy advice and best practice in the management of major national health funding reform.

Privacy—the privacy of information is paramount in complying with secrecy and disclosure requirements of national health reform arrangements.

Transparency—to be transparent in the reporting and transactions of funding activities within the National Health Funding Pool.

WE ALSO UPHOLD THE AUSTRALIAN PUBLIC SERVICE VALUES OF BEING
  1. I – IMPARTIAL
  2. C – COMMITTED TO SERVICE
  3. A – ACCOUNTABLE
  4. R – RESPECTFUL
  5. E – ETHICAL
  6. IN ALL OUR PRACTICES

Our Strategic Objectives

We have adopted five high–level strategic objectives, which capture the scope of our responsibilities and serve the Vision and Mission of our organisation.

Achieve best practice and accountability

To achieve best practice and accountability through assisting the Administrator in implementing and overseeing a nationally consistent public hospital funding arrangement through the National Health Funding Pool.

Provide increased transparency and effective reporting

To provide increased transparency and effective reporting on the local hospital networks that are funded for the services they deliver to the community.

Enable accurate Commonwealth contribution calculations

To enable accurate Commonwealth contribution calculations by using nationally consistent pricing and costing standards.

Develop productive and effective partnerships

To develop productive and effective partnerships with relevant stakeholders, enabling the objectives of the Agreement to be achieved.

Operate as a fully functional and compliant agency

To operate as a fully functional and compliant agency, meeting statutory and legislative obligations

Our Strategic Plan 2013–16 is available from: www.nhfb.gov.au/publications.

Previous Page Next Page