In 2017, following a review of hospital safety and quality assurance, the Victorian Government established the Victorian Agency for Health Information (VAHI) to analyse and share information across Victoria’s healthcare system to stimulate improvements, increase transparency and inform the community.
Since the agency’s establishment, VAHI has improved quality and safety reporting in Victoria. Health services have better access to accurate, timely and actionable data that is essential for ensuring Victorians receive the best possible care.
2019–20 has seen further achievements in improving the reporting of quality, safety and performance of our health system.
The development of the VAHI Data Request Hub has improved the accessibility of data for clinicians, researchers and government, streamlining data request processes so that users can access a range of health data in one place, with a quicker turnaround.
The launch of the new Victorian Health Services Performance portal helped to strengthen transparency by providing Victorians with easy access to interactive data on quality and safety performance for Victoria’s public health services and hospitals.
VAHI has also continued to collaborate with health service boards to further strengthen clinical governance systems. The agency released its redeveloped Board safety and quality report in November 2019 and has facilitated a new educational program in collaboration with Safer Care Victoria (SCV) to strengthen board members’ capacity to provide informed and effective oversight of Victoria’s health services.
This year’s achievements also include publishing the findings of the 2017 Victorian Population Health Survey (VPHS). These findings help build a clearer picture of the health of all Victorians and inform health service improvement initiatives. The new Victorian Population Health Survey and Data Steering Committee is advising on the future direction of the VPHS, to ensure it captures emerging issues and provides effective support for evidence-based health policy and service delivery.
Finally, in the face of an unprecedented public health emergency, VAHI has provided valuable support to Victoria’s coronavirus (COVID-19) response by facilitating easy access to related data for health services and government.
VAHI has strengthened its collaboration and co-design with health services and clinicians to ensure usability of reports and data. VAHI is also increasing its collaboration with a range of partners, including SCV and the Department of Health and Human Services to develop better quality and safety systems within the Victorian health sector. I am confident that this work will drive even better performance by our health services and improved health outcomes for all Victorians.