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Early pilot of Diabetes Coordinated Care to begin July 2011



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THE HON NICOLA ROXON MP

Minister for Health and Ageing

MEDIA RELEASE

12 November 2010

Early Pilot of Diabetes Coordinated Care to Begin July 2011

The Minister for Health and Ageing, Nicola Roxon, today announced the early commencement of a pilot of the Coordinated Care for Diabetes reform, which will robustly evaluate the reform’s practical design, clinical patient outcomes and other important indicators such as patient well-being and quality of life.

This decision to pilot Coordinated Care for Diabetes from 1 July 2011, twelve months before the reform was set to begin, follows stakeholder consultation and will fully road-test the initiative to make sure it achieves the best outcomes for people with diabetes.

To allow for the pilot, the Government will defer the full roll-out of Coordinated Care for Diabetes until after its results are known. This will not affect existing Medicare entitlements for diabetes patients.

The Minister for Health and Ageing, Nicola Roxon, said an important focus of the pilot will be to assess how Coordinated Care for Diabetes can support a more consumer-centred approach to care through expanding the choices available to people with diabetes, and providing structured multidisciplinary diabetes patient education packages.

“The Government is confident there is ample evidence to show that consumer centred co-ordinated care provides better health outcomes,” Ms Roxon said.

“However, as a Government we are always prepared to listen and respond to views put by the community. This is a positive change to ensure clear proof of the Coordinated Care for Diabetes concept, which will ultimately deliver even stronger benefits for the growing number of Australians who suffer from diabetes.”

Consumers, diabetes stakeholders and health professional groups will be closely involved in the design and detailed implementation of the pilot through the Diabetes Advisory Group, which the Australian Medical Association will now join. Diabetes Australia, the peak consumer and stakeholder group for diabetes, will continue to play a central role on the Diabetes Advisory Group. The Advisory Group will be convened in the next few weeks to begin overseeing the design and planning for the pilot.

The pilot is anticipated to last between 3 to 4 years so that it can produce robust data on patient and clinical outcomes.

The Government will invest $30.2 million in the pilot. The deferral of the full implementation of the initiative will therefore reduce expenditure over the forward estimates by $418 million. The financial impact of this policy was included in the 2010-11 Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook released by the Treasurer this week.

The Government will consider further timing on the wider roll-out of Coordinated Care for Diabetes once it has assessed the outcomes of the pilot.

For all media inquiries, please contact the Minister's Office on 02 6277 7220