The Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) partners, through service agreements, with approximately 1 900 funded organisations to deliver person-centred services and care. It spends approximately $2.8 billion annually in this way. Service agreements define DHHS's and funded organisations' mutual responsibilities and obligations.
Funded organisations provide a wide range of health and human services through service agreements. Some of these services support clients that are particularly vulnerable and include children who are placed in out of home care and clients experiencing homelessness and family violence.
Previous reviews of government departments' partnership with community sector organisations have commonly highlighted the need for improved oversight of outsourced health and human services, with deficiencies focusing on inadequate monitoring practices.
In this audit, we assessed whether DHHS has sufficient capability in managing service agreements to ensure funded organisations deliver agreed health and wellbeing supports and outcomes to clients.
We make five recommendations for DHHS.