As part of the scheme, the Commonwealth enters into a contract with each of the service providers. The contract is the same for each provider and is regularly re-negotiated.
A new contract was recently negotiated between the OHS and service providers and will take effect from 1 July 2012.
The contract requires service providers to:
- acknowledge and agree certain matters (for example, that they will comply with the Act and the contract)
- provide services in a certain manner and in accordance with certain standards and rules.
The contract also describes service provider obligations in relation to matters such as clinical records, sites, devices and claims for payment.
Based on discussions with the OHS and stakeholders, it is clear that the contract is the core document that stakeholders perceive as ‘setting the rules for the scheme’ and describing the Australian Government’s expectations. It is also the document that is most relied on by the OHS to take action against non-compliant providers.