The South Australia Innovation Hub Trial

Page last updated: 15 February 2017

What was the South Australia Innovation Hub Trial?

The South Australia Innovation Hub Trial (Hub Trial) was an initiative between a small group of providers in South Australia, the Department of Health (previously Department of Social Services), COTA Australia, the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency and the Aged Care Financing Authority. It showcased collaboration and partnership between industry, government and the community.

The objective of the Hub Trial was to improve and sustain better outcomes for older Australians engaged with aged care services through an earned autonomy approach for aged care.

The trialled earned autonomy approach involved reducing regulatory intervention to higher performing providers of aged care services in exchange for better practice approaches to consumer engagement and governance, and focus on innovation and delivering quality care. The Hub Trial was aimed at benefitting older people and their families as well as aged care providers. Hub members were monitored during the trial, including through unannounced site visits, to ensure quality services continued to be delivered.

What was being trialled?

The 12 month Hub Trial was launched on 10 October 2014. During the trial a small group of aged care providers in South Australia ran their business with:

  • The possibility of less frequent audits and a streamlined approach to assessment of accreditation standards by the Australian Aged Care Quality Agency.
  • Less intervention by the then Aged Care Complaints Scheme and a focus on greater resolution by the provider.
  • Opportunities to work with the Aged Care Financing Authority to improve financial data collection and reporting requirements.
  • The possibility of reduced Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI) reviews.

The Hub Trial used a Communities of Practice (CoP) model of collaboration to build the capacity of Hub providers and improve the quality of care and services delivered. The CoP promoted dialogue and sharing of information between Hub providers on a range of strategic and operational matters in the aged care context.

Evaluation of the Hub Trial

The Hub Trial has been independently evaluated. The Evaluation Report found that the Communities of Practice (CoP) model of engagement was highly successful in supporting Hub Trial participants to progress initiatives, share learnings, test ideas, build trusted relationships and achieve outcomes.

What is happening after the Hub Trial?

While government is no longer involved, Hub service providers have continued to meet and undertake work beyond the 12 month period of the trial to progress longer term goals of mutual interest. Details of these projects are available on the visit the Hub providers’ webpage.