Health Workforce Planning Framework – Supporting Practical Workforce Planning

Effective health workforce planning is essential to improve the equity, quality, efficiency and accessibility of health services. In Australia, health workforce planning must be integrated across all levels of Government, as well as public, private and community health sectors. This Planning Framework will focus on Commonwealth funded planning activities.

Page last updated: 01 October 2019

The Department of Health is developing a Workforce Planning Framework to support long-term planning for the training, supply and distribution of Australia’s health professionals.

The Planning Framework will be an operational blueprint for planning and structuring the health workforce to meet the demands of emerging community health care needs at the national, state and territory and local levels.

The Planning Framework will be aligned with the Australian health system and will:

  • Develop a comprehensive guide for engagement between the public, private and community health sectors on workforce issues such as training, development and geographic distribution of the health workforce;
  • Provide an objective, transparent and operational set of principles to guide health workforce planning activities; and
  • Outline a system map of the current funding, roles, responsibilities, policies and programs that influence health workforce planning.

Consultation with stakeholders

A consultation process with key stakeholders that delivers Commonwealth health programs will:

  • Identify potential linkages, points of duplication, and gaps in current activities at the Commonwealth, jurisdiction and local levels.
  • Gather information on the current state of the health workforce planning; and
  • Review unique challenges and specific limitations of the current and previous workforce planning environments.

Supporting Workforce Strategies

The Government is implementing new strategies to support Australia’s health workforce and to improve how services are planned, organised and delivered. Strategies include:

  • The Ten Year Primary Health Care Plan;
  • The National Medical Workforce Strategy;
  • The Stronger Rural Health Strategy;
  • The National Mental Health Workforce Strategy;
  • Nursing 2030;
  • The National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workforce Planning Framework 2016-2023;
  • The Aged Care Workforce Strategy.

The Planning Framework will support these strategies by providing tools and practical advice that can be adapted to a variety of settings to support workforce planning activities at all levels.


Consultation will continue throughout October 2019.

The Planning Framework is expected to be completed by early 2020.

Further information email: