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Funding available for residential aged care telehealth facilities

Published 13 October 2022

Move to improve virtual healthcare consultations for senior Australians


Northern Queensland Primary Health Network (NQPHN) invites applications from experienced digital health contractors to assist residential aged care facilities (RACFs) with telehealth facilities across North Queensland.

The tender involves assisting participating RACFs to have appropriate, functional, and secure telehealth facilities and equipment to enable their residents to virtually consult with their primary health care professionals, specialists, and other clinicians, when needed.

The facilities should be compatible with most existing virtual consulting technology used by providers in the NQPHN region and should be guided by recognised telehealth standards. This includes systems used by hospitals.

The tender also involves:

  • establishing baseline data about RACFs’ capability and capacity in relation to digital health, especially telehealth capability in the northern Queensland region
  • providing training to participating RACF staff to support them in developing their capabilities to assist their residents in accessing virtual consultation services, where the need has been identified.

NQPHN Chief Executive Officer Robin Whyte said that the 2018 Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety (Royal Commission) examined the complex issues faced by senior Australians at the frontline of primary health care and aged care systems.

Considered were the lack of access to general practitioners (GPs) and allied health professionals in RACFs, difficulties accessing after hours services, and inappropriate transfers to hospitals, all of which contributed to poor outcomes for senior Australians and increased pressure on the health system.

“Timely access to primary health care professionals, whether through face-to-face or telehealth consultations, has been recognised as an issue for many RACFs, which in some cases can lead to potentially preventable hospitalisations,” said Ms Whyte.

“RACFs require adequate, functional, and secure telehealth facilities to support access to virtual consultations for their residents.

“This work will help participating RACFs to have appropriate virtual consultation facilities and support their residents with improved levels of access to telehealth services from primary health care providers and encourages RACFs to have appropriate after hours plans in place.

“In recognition of these identified needs the Department of Health and Aged Care has directed Primary Health Networks across Australia to undertake a number of activities, especially around digital health and after-hours support.”

Applicants wishing to tender can visit NQPHN’s online procurement portal at

The tender closes on 11 November 2022.

Last updated: 14 October 2022