Prioritising models of healthcare service delivery for a more sustainable health system: a Delphi study of Australian health policy, clinical practice and management, academic and consumer stakeholders

Polina Putrik, Rebecca Jessup, Rachelle Buchbinder, Paul Glasziou, Jonathan Karnon, Denise A. O’Connor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Objectives. Healthcare expenditure is growing at an unsustainable rate in developed countries. A recent scoping review identified several alternative healthcare delivery models with the potential to improve health system sustainability. Our objective was to obtain input and consensus from an expert Delphi panel about which alternative models they considered most promising for increasing value in healthcare delivery in Australia and to contribute to shaping a research agenda in the field. Methods. The panel first reviewed a list of 84 models obtained through the preceding scoping review and contributed additional ideas in an open round. In a subsequent scoring round, the panel rated the priority of each model in terms of its potential to improve health care sustainability in Australia. Consensus was assumed when ≥50% of the panel rated a model as (very) high priority (consensus on high priority) or as not a priority or low priority (consensus on low priority). Results. Eighty-two of 149 invited participants (55%) representing all Australian states/territories and wide expertise completed round one; 71 completed round two. Consensus on high priority was achieved for 59 alternative models; 14 were rated as (very) high priority by ≥70% of the panel. Top priorities included improving medical service provision in aged care facilities, providing single-point-access multidisciplinary care for people with chronic conditions and providing tailored early discharge and hospital at home instead of in-patient care. No consensus was reached on 47 models, but no model was deemed low priority. Conclusions. Input from an expert stakeholder panel identified healthcare delivery models not previously synthesised in systematic reviews that are a priority to investigate. Strong consensus exists among stakeholders regarding which models require the most urgent attention in terms of (cost-)effectiveness research. These findings contribute to shaping a research agenda on healthcare delivery models and where stakeholder engagement in Australia is likely to be high.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)425-432
Number of pages8
JournalAustralian Health Review
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Alternative delivery arrangements
  • Delphi study
  • Health system sustainability
  • Improving value
  • Models of healthcare service delivery
  • Reducing waste

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