Tasmanian Health Service - Procurement Policy

Ms ARMITAGE to LEADER of the GOVERNMENT in the LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL, Mrs HISCUTT

[2.42 p.m.]

Regarding products and services utilised by the Tasmanian Health Service, would the Leader please advise -

(1) How common is it for business services, such as conducting surveys used by the Tasmanian Health Service, to be purchased from non-Tasmanian companies?

(2) Does the THS have any internal policies to purchase goods and services that are Tasmanian? If so, can the Leader please expand on these?

(3) Does the Government plan to apply the Premier's Economic and Social Recovery Advisory Council's - PESRAC's - recommendation No. 18 - namely, that the state Government should require agencies to purchase from Tasmanian business on an 'if not, why not' basis for at least the next two years, to the THS?

(4) With regard to question (3), if not, why not?

I should point out I have just received the survey from the Launceston General Hospital with regard to my admittance.

ANSWER

Mr President, I thank the member for Launceston for her question.

(1) In relation to the procurement of services, THS complies with the requirements of the Treasurer's Instructions and whole-of-government procurement policies and procedures, including:

  • For procurements under $100 000, where agencies directly select a supplier, they should approach Tasmanian businesses first where there is local capacity, capability and value for money in local offerings.

  • For all procurements over $100 000, included in the evaluation criteria is a local Economic and Social Benefits Test, which carries a 25 per cent weighting.

  • For procurements under $250 000 where quotations are sought, agencies are required to invite two Tasmanian businesses to quote where there is local capacity and capability.

  • For all procurements over $250 000, agencies must prepare a formal, pre‑procurement local impact assessment to ensure Tasmanian suppliers are given every opportunity to participate in a procurement and be successful.

  • For all procurements over $250 000, all procurement opportunities must be disaggregated unless an exemption has been granted where the benefits of aggregation clearly outweigh any potential negative impact on local suppliers or the local economy.

The Department of Health, including the THS, has an internal procurement unit and review mechanism, through a procurement review committee to ensure compliance with the Treasurer's Instructions and procurement policies and procedures.

(2) The department does not have separate internal policies in respect of the purchase of goods and services and complies with all requirements of the Treasurer's Instructions and whole-of-government procurement policies and procedures as detailed under question (1).

(3) The Premier announced on 18 August 2020 that the Government would implement all recommendations from the PESRAC interim report. The Government has taken action to strengthen 'buy local' policies and has raised the low-value procurement threshold from $50 000 to $100 000, meaning more opportunities for Tasmanian businesses.

An economic and social benefits test and associated statement have also replaced the local benefits test and local SME industry impact statement to allow a greater focus on Tasmanian social and economic factors when government agencies evaluate the competitive procurements.

Tasmanian Health Service - Procurement Policy

Ms ARMITAGE to LEADER of the GOVERNMENT in the LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL, Mrs HISCUTT

To follow-up to that answer - and I will put it in writing - why is the Launceston General Hospital using a Queensland firm to send out surveys? I think it is worth a question.

ANSWER

Mr President, I thank the member for Launceston for her very direct question and good point.

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