Project objectives

The Department of Health and Ageing wanted to evaluate the Medical Specialist Outreach Assistance Program and the Visiting Optometrists Scheme. The aim of the evaluation was to:

  • Identify opportunities for improving coordination of services between the two programs.
  • Examine the potential impact of the Health Reform Agenda on both programs.
  • Determine whether the model of service delivery under each program is effectively, efficiently and equitably meeting the needs of clients and other stakeholders.

Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing

Our approach

HPA designed a mixed methods evaluation that included a literature review and document analysis, interviews with an extensive range of stakeholders, a call for written submissions from stakeholders, surveys of service providers (both MSOAP and VOS), analysis of program and Medicare data, and case studies of seven communities across Australia and one national program (Tele-Derm). Overall, 66 interviews were held with 57 organisations and 160 individuals. Written submissions were received from 23 organisations or individuals. Fifty-nine individuals were interviewed for the case studies.


We made recommendations in the areas sought by the Department, some of which were subsequently implemented.

Our vision

HPA aims to be a leading firm in specialist consulting services in the health care sector, offering qualitative and quantitative analysis and synthesis of evidence, providing expertise in statistics and data science, and contributing to well founded and practical policy advice. We aim to deliver the highest quality of services, helping our clients to achieve their objectives, while transferring our expertise and building their capabilities.

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