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Australia Calls For Private & Public Hospitals To Cooperate On COVID-19

 |  April 7, 2020

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has separately authorized private hospitals in Victoria and in Queensland to cooperate with their state health agencies, public hospitals, and each other, as they prepare for and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

State governments are seeking to boost the capacity of their health systems during the current health crisis by integrating the operations of public and private hospitals.

These two ACCC authorizations will help facilitate this by allowing private and public hospitals in each state, and state governments, to work together; for example by discussing expected demand for services and available resources, sharing and jointly procuring equipment, medicines and other resources, allocating patients between hospitals, or sharing staff.

“There is a clear public interest in health authorities and hospitals responding to this pandemic in a cooperative, transparent and efficient way,” ACCC Chair Rod Sims said.

“These authorisations will help ensure that hospitals and health authorities in Victoria and Queensland can take necessary steps to provide coordinated and consistent care for what may be a significant rise in patients.”

The applications follow the Commonwealth Government’s recent direction for all hospitals to temporarily suspend the majority of elective surgery to free up resources to deal with expected surges in demand from COVID-19 patients.

Full Content: Bloomberg

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