Our Focus

2017-18 key areas of focus

Development of the strategic plan informs the identification of priorities for the coming year. During 2017-18, the Organ and Tissue Authority (OTA), in partnership with state and territory governments and the DonateLife Network, will deliver the national program to achieve continued and sustained increases in organ and tissue donation for transplantation.

  1. The 2017–2021 Strategic Plan documents ten key areas of strategic focus for 2017–18: Community education and awareness initiatives promote donor registration and family discussion to ensure that donation wishes are known
  2. Routine referral to the DonateLife Agency/ hospital donation specialist team occurs for all intensive care unit and emergency department patients with planned end-of-life care, to ensure accurate and timely donor assessment
  3. Families of potential donors receive excellent care and communication, through implementation of the Best practice guideline for offering organ and tissue donation in Australia
  4. Education and training of donation specialists, intensive care staff and other clinical staff to optimise donation practices
  5. Donors and their families are acknowledged for their generous gift of donation and are provided with support services that best meet their needs
  6. Clinical champions remove barriers and normalise organ and tissue donation within hospitals
  7. Senior hospital executive engagement provides leadership to ensure a positive donation culture within hospitals
  8. Use of audit, measurement and reporting informs and drives clinical practice improvement to increase donation and transplantation
  9. Transplant allocation systems and technologies support access to efficient, equitable and safe transplantation
  10. Adequate downstream resourcing exists for surgical retrieval, tissue typing and transplantation services.

The ten key areas of strategic focus highlight our commitment to ongoing clinical practice improvement in DonateLife Network hospitals with seven of the ten key areas focusing on improved hospital-based clinical activity.

2016-17 Strategic Priorities

Consistent with our three key objectives and government budget measures, the OTA, in partnership with the DonateLife Network and the community sector, has identified ten strategic priorities for 2016–17:

  1. Implement the Clinical Practice Improvement Program Phase 2 and the DonateLife Collaborative strengthening organ and tissue donation practice in DonateLife Network hospitals
  2. Partner with state and territory governments and the transplant sector to optimise organ utilisation for transplantation through using organ perfusion technology, understanding blood borne virus transmission, and exploring further opportunities to expand the donor pool
  3. Collaborate with the Blood Service, the DonateLife Network and the transplant sector to deliver the Australian Organ Matching System scheduled for implementation in 2018, to maximise access and enhance clinical outcomes for organ donation and transplantation e.g. specific age matching of donors to recipients
  4. Contribute to increasing awareness and access to living organ donation
  5. Deliver the national donor online registration campaign calling on Australians to register donation decisions on the Australian Organ Donor Register and to discuss their decision with family and loved ones
  6. Implement and monitor the Australian best practice model for offering organ and tissue donation in Australia providing optimal information and support for families and clinicians when organ donation is possible
  7. Implement the Electronic Donor Record Eye Module supporting a nationally consistent approach to eye donation from the point of donor identification to the dispatch of processed eye tissue to clinicians for surgical use
  8. Contribute to the implementation of the recommendations of the Economic Analysis of the Australian Tissue Sector Report pending an agreed implementation plan
  9. Contribute to the implementation of the recommendations of the Ernst and Young Review Report, Review of the implementation of the national reform agenda on organ and tissue donation and transplantation
  10. Model projected organ donation growth and identify indicative organ donation targets for agreement by Health Ministers. The agreed targets will inform workforce and resource planning to ensure that all possible donation and transplantation opportunities are realised.

2015-16 Strategic Priorities

During 2015-16, the Organ and Tissue Authority (OTA), in partnership with state and territory governments and the DonateLife Network, will continue to remain focused on the delivery of the national reform programme objectives and outcomes to achieve continued and sustained increases in organ and tissue donation. Our efforts will focus on five key priority areas:

1. Implementing Phase 2 of the Clinical Governance Framework

The OTA, in partnership with State and Territory Governments and the DonateLife Network, will implement Phase 2 of the Clinical Governance Framework and Clinical Practice Improvement Program (CPIP).

CPIP Phase 2 will involve a refreshed approach to the implementation of the Hospital Activity Plans. It will also involve additional support for DLN staff from their interstate colleagues at paired hospitals through the DonateLife Collaborative. The DonateLife Collaborative will also include a focus on those hospitals with the greatest potential to increase deceased donation rates. The DonateLife Collaborative will culminate with peer hospital audits undertaken by DLN, OTA and state and territory health department staff to further strengthen the delivery of organ and tissue donation specialist services in key DLN hospitals across Australia.

2. Continuing to deliver specialist education to health professionals involved in conversations with families about the opportunity for donation

Education opportunities for health professionals involved in family donation conversations will continue to be developed and delivered. This work will contribute to increasing the donation consent rate. Advanced Family Donation Conversation (FDC) workshops will be developed to provide treating clinicians and donation specialists with increased knowledge and skills to support families in making donation decisions. In addition, an Eye and Tissue FDC workshop tailored to telephone-based family consent for eye and tissue donation outside of the hospital setting will be developed and delivered.

3. Developing a national vigilance and surveillance framework for organ donation and transplantation

Endorsement of the National Vigilance and Surveillance Framework to further support safety and quality in organ donation for transplantation will be sought from states and territories and key stakeholders. The Framework will support the investigation, resolution and learning from adverse outcomes related to organ donation for transplantation. In addition, a Vigilance and Surveillance Expert Advisory Committee will be established to provide advice on appropriate evaluation, reporting and remedial action required for notified adverse events related to deceased organ donation for transplantation.

4. Commencing development of the Australian Organ Matching System

Development of the Australian Organ Matching System (AOMS) will commence to replace the current organ matching system. The AOMS will be developed with the functionality to adapt in an agile and timely manner to implement future clinical innovations in the matching and allocation of donor organs. The system will allow for optimal matching of transplant recipients through the application of best-practice algorithms to further maximise the equity of access and clinical outcomes of transplants in Australia.

5. Conducting community awareness and education activities on organ and tissue donation

The number of registrations on the Australian Organ Donor Register (AODR) will be increased by improved awareness of the importance and process of registration, including introducing the functionality for electronic signatures. Increased AODR registration, together with improved family knowledge of donation decisions, will provide greater certainty of an individual’s donation decision for clinicians and families at the family donation conversation. The electronic registration process will be supported by the OTA through the implementation of a national online donor registration campaign and revising the Professional Education Program to incorporate AODR changes.

2014-15 Strategic Priorities

During 2014-15, the Organ and Tissue Authority (OTA) will continue to remain focused on the delivery of the national reform programme objectives and outcomes, and to work with all our stakeholders in achieving continued and sustained increases in organ and tissue donation. In particular, the OTA will be focussing on five key priority areas:

1. Implementing the second stage of the DonateLife Clinical Governance Framework

The second stage of the DonateLife Clinical Governance Framework will deliver a targeted hospital practice improvement program for the subset of DonateLife Network (DLN) hospitals with demonstrated performance below national average outcomes in request and consent rates. It will prioritise intervention using outcome and process performance data from the DonateLife Audit and the Clinical Governance Framework.

The targeted hospital practice improvement program will build on the Clinical Governance Framework which has been implemented across the DLN and provides the governance and accountability structure that supports effective implementation of a Clinical Practice Improvement Program in each DonateLife Network hospital across Australia.

2. Developing a national vigilance and surveillance framework for organ donation and transplantation

The national vigilance and surveillance framework will support the reporting and investigation of adverse outcomes related to organ donation and transplantation. The data gathered will inform clinical practice improvement and allow for public reporting.

3. Delivering specialist education to health professionals involved in conversations with families about the opportunity for donation

Education will continue to be provided in all states and territories through the Family Donation Conversation (FDC) workshops of the Professional Education Package. FDC workshops provide health professionals with the necessary knowledge and skills to communicate with grieving families and support them to make a fully informed and enduring decision about donation.

The effectiveness of the FDC training, including its impact on requesting practices, family experiences and consent rates for donation, will continue to be evaluated.

4. Conducting community awareness and education activities on organ and tissue donation, in partnership with sector and community organisations

The public will continue to be educated about the need for family discussion and knowledge of organ and tissue donation decisions and be provided information to assist them in making and registering donation decisions on the Australian Organ Donor Register.

In partnership with sector organisations and the broader community, awareness raising activities will comprise: DonateLife Week; targeted community education campaigns; media liaison; and, online and social media engagement. These activities will include targeted outreach with communities and demographic groups that are less engaged with organ and tissue donation, including culturally and linguistically diverse audiences.

5. Merge functions of the OTA and NBA

The OTA will work with the Department of Health and the NBA on plans to merge functions to streamline corporate and administrative activities within the context of a whole-of-government approach to other entity mergers to ensure new arrangements are effectively implemented.

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DISCUSS

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