Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (NSW) (GIPA Act)

Agency Information Guide

Legislation is now in place to facilitate your right to information produced by NSW government agencies, including the Bureau of Health Information (BHI).

The Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act) promotes openness, accountability and transparency and encourages the proactive release of information, unless there is a legitimate public interest against disclosure.

On this page, you can find out how to access information held by BHI.

About BHI

BHI is a board-governed organisation that provides independent reports and data about the performance of the NSW public healthcare system to the people of NSW.

BHI was established in 2009 to provide system-wide support through transparent reporting. BHI publishes independent reports and data about the performance of the public healthcare system in NSW. We do this so people can see how well the healthcare system is functioning and where there are opportunities to improve. All of our reports are available free of charge on the reports page of this website. Data are available on our interactive data portal Healthcare Observer. BHI manages the NSW Patient Survey Program, gathering information from thousands of patients about their experiences in NSW public hospitals and healthcare facilities. The results from the surveys are also available in the reports section of this website and on Healthcare Observer.

Some of the functions of BHI are to:

  • publish regular reports, including an annual report, on the performance of the NSW public health system
  • provide online information and analysis on the performance of the NSW public health system
  • develop reports and tools to enable analysis of the performance of health services, clinical units and clinical teams across the public health system
  • advise the NSW Ministry of Health on the quality of existing data sets and the development of enhanced information analysis and reporting to support our work
  • undertake research to support BHI’s performance.

BHI is a small specialised organisation that includes skilled staff in data analysis, health services research, communications and corporate support. BHI’s organisational chart is available below.

The Chief Executive, Dr Jean-Frederic Levesque, leads the management team consisting of:

  • Kim Sutherland, Senior Director Performance Measurement and Reporting
  • Jason Boyd, Director Surveys
  • Behnoosh Khalaj, Director Data Management and Analyses
  • Ros O’Sullivan, Director Corporate Affairs and Chief Audit Executive
  • Karen Perini, Director Communications and Stakeholder Engagement.

The Board of the Bureau of Health Information has direct line report to the NSW Minister for Health. Its membership includes:

  • Professor Carol Pollock, Chairperson
  • Mr Ian Gillespie
  • Mr Andrew Goodsall
  • Professor Jane Hall
  • Professor Louisa Jorm
  • Professor Mohamed Khadra
  • Dr Nigel Lyons
  • Mrs Mary Elizabeth Rummery AM  
  • Associate Professor John Worthington
  • Dr Jean-Frederic Levesque, Chief Executive.

Our Corporate Governance Attestation Statement, sets out the role of the Board in regard to corporate governance practices.

Information held by BHI

All BHI reports are available, free of charge, on this website. We ensure transparency in our work by making our Reports Plan available online. This plan outlines the reports and projects that are in development and target release dates for publication.

BHI reports use healthcare data from hospitals and other health services, vital statistics and disease registries, and data from surveys of NSW patients and international surveys. We interpret results and offer a clear and engaging presentation of information, widely disseminating our findings when reports are published. BHI has clearly established processes of internal checking followed by consultation and peer review to ensure the highest level of accuracy.

BHI is not the primary custodian of all data used to produce reports. Some data is sourced externally from databases that are held by other organisations such as the NSW Ministry of Health, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) or The Commonwealth Fund. If you are looking to access the data that BHI conducts analyses on, you may need to approach the organisation that is responsible for the data. Full data references are available in each report.

How to access information held by BHI

Under the GIPA Act, there are four ways to access information from a government agency:

The following open access information must be disclosed on this website:

  • Documents that have been tabled in Parliament by or on behalf of BHI can be found in the Corporate Reports section of our website

  • A disclosure log of formal access to information applications

    BHI is yet to receive any formal applications for access to information under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act). As access applications are received, we will publish a disclosure log, which will detail the information requested and our response to each request.

  • Policy documents that may affect or have an impact on members of the public

    There are currently no relevant policy documents. As such policies are established, we will publish detailed information on this website.

  • A register of government contracts

    BHI has recreated a register of contracts (155KB PDF) valued at $150,000 or more with the private sector.

  • Media releases

    All BHI media releases are available in the Media section of our website.

All BHI reports and information that it publishes are available free of charge on this website. This information includes:

You can make a request at any time for other information held by BHI. This is known as an informal request. Informal requests can be made by emailing BHI at BHI-enq@health.nsw.gov.au

If your request is for data from BHI, please complete this form and email it to BHI-enq@health.nsw.gov.au

If information cannot be accessed through any of the above ways, a formal access application may be necessary. This should be a last resort under the GIPA Act, and only necessary if:

  • you are asking for a large volume of information
  • providing access would involve BHI conducting an extensive search
  • the information you seek involves personal or business information about third parties who BHI must consult before the information can be released.

Applications must be in writing, and accompanied by a $30 fee. Processing charges of $30 per hour may also be levied, depending on the type and amount of information sought.

To make a formal access application, please complete the formal access application form (found below) and send it to:

Right to Information Officer
Bureau of Health Information
Level 11
67 Albert Avenue
Chatswood NSW 2067

Contact BHI

BHI invites community feedback about performance information on the NSW public health system using the following contact information:

Address

Bureau of Health Information
Level 11
67 Albert Avenue
Chatswood
New South Wales 2067

Phone

Ph: + 61 2 9464 4444
Fax: + 61 2 9464 4445

Enquiries

Enquiries: BHI-enq@health.nsw.gov.au
Media Assistance: BHI-bhimedia@health.nsw.gov.au

Data requests

To request data from BHI, please complete this form and email it to BHI-enq@health.nsw.gov.au

More information:

Page updated: 10th Mar 2017
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