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Patients & visitors

Getting involved

Getting involved

Austin Health has a long-standing commitment to consumer and community participation.


We are guided by the Consumer Partnership Framework which provides the details of how we partner with our consumers across five key areas. These areas include:

  • Person-centred services, care and outcomes
  • Teams, partnerships, knowledge transfer and shared learning
  • Equity, diversity, inclusion and responsiveness
  • Participation and shared decision making
  • Health literacy, information and communication

Consumer and community participation is an integral part of the core business of Austin Health.

Partnerships with patients and consumer comprise many different, interwoven practices across three levels of partnership:

  • At the level of the health service organisation
  • At the level of the service, department or division
  • At the direct level of care with the individual

We are committed to improving and extending consumer and community participation opportunities in service planning, development, implementation and evaluation across all sites and multiple service-delivery areas.


Consumer is a general term that refers to the users or potential users of services, and in the health sector includes patients, clients, residents, carers, relatives and community advocates.

Consumer participation/engagement is the process of involving health consumers and the community in decision-making about their own health care, health service planning, policy development, setting priorities and quality issues in the delivery of services.

Community refers to people who may not be consumers of health services, but have an interest in health services or the health system as taxpayers and citizens.

Carers are those who have an active role in caring for the consumer of a health service, and may or may not include family members.

Community Advisory Committee

The Austin Health Community Advisory Committee (CAC) is an advisory committee to the Austin Health Board which operates under the Victorian public health services community advisory committee guidelines.

The committee has a critical role in:

  • Assisting our health service to appropriately integrate consumer and community views at all levels of its operations, planning and evaluation
  • Advocating to the Board on behalf of the community

Find out more about the Community Advisory Committee.

Consumer participation

The Austin Health consumer register is a database of people who are interested in participating in different improvement opportunities across our organisation. The database is made of up community members, past and current patients and their carers.

We know that consumer participation leads to improvements in the quality, safety and accessibility of our services. Your involvement can help us to meet the needs of the community we serve.

How can I participate?

You can participate in many different ways, such as:

  • Join the Austin Health Community Advisory Committee (CAC)
  • Become a member of a committee
  • Join a project working group
  • Train staff, patient simulations or other consumers
  • Collect feedback from patients about their experience
  • Provide feedback in focus groups or surveys
  • Review patient information and provide feedback (includes website, written and video content)

If you choose to join the Austin Health consumer register, we will contact you when opportunities to participate arise.

Your participation is voluntary, so it is up to you whether you choose to accept or decline an opportunity. You can choose to participate in areas which are relevant to your interest or experience.

Consumer participation is embedded in the:

If you would like to get involved, complete an application form.

If you would like more information about consumer and community participation at Austin Health, please get in touch with us.

Contact us

Patient Experience Unit

Phone: 03 9496 3564

Email: consumerpartners@austin.org.au


Patient Experience Unit
Austin Hospital
145 Studley Road
Heidelberg VIC

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