Public–private hospitals partnership agreement prioritises community need

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

The ground-breaking agreement reached today for private hospitals to contribute to the health sector response to COVID-19 is welcome news, says Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association Chief Executive, Alison Verhoeven.

‘Ensuring we make best use of every person and all resources available in the health system to support the strongest possible approach to managing the COVID-19 pandemic is critical’, said Ms Verhoeven.

‘It’s also vitally important that the stability of the health system is assured for the future—so we can’t afford to allow the focus to shift only to emergency response.

‘We have a long history of public and private health services working in partnership with each other, and many in the health workforce have experience in working across both systems. Maximising the contributions of the private sector to the public-funded response to COVID-19 is in all our best interests.

‘We are pleased that the arrangements agreed by Minister Hunt with private hospital operators include a provision for their services to operate as not-for-profit services and to be subject to audit requirements in exchange for this public funding commitment. 

‘Transparency will be critical to providing public confidence in the arrangements,’ says Ms Verhoeven.

‘Collaboration to protect the health of all in our community must take precedence over individual interests.

‘We applaud the leadership that government and private sector health leaders have demonstrated in reaching this agreement.’


More information on AHHA is available at


The Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association is the national peak body for public and not-for-profit hospitals, Primary Health Networks, and community and primary healthcare services.

Media enquiries: Alison Verhoeven, Chief Executive, AHHA, 0403 282 501