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In this section, you can find the following information:

Consumer and Community Participation

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

We endeavour to embed genuine consumer and community participation in order to:

  • Respect consumer's right to participate in decision-making processes
  • Improve the safety and quality of provided healthcare services
  • Improve patients' healthcare outcomes and
  • Provide equitable care and access to services that are responsive to the needs of our community

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

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 Austin Health CAC has a critical role in:

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

You can find out more about the Community Advisory Committee here.

At Austin Health Consumer participation is embedded in the:

For information about consumer and community participation at Austin Health, and how to get involved please contact Bernadette Vandenberg, Centre for Patient Experience 9496 3566 or via e-mail: bernadette.vandenberg@austin.org.au

Acknowledgement flags

Austin Health acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging.
We celebrate, value and include people of all backgrounds, genders, sexualities, cultures, bodies and abilities.