A new edition of the Australian Healthcare State of the Industry Report, which summarises the industry’s key opportunities and challenges for the year ahead, has just been released.

The report, which this year is entitled ‘Adapting to forces of change in 2020 and beyond’, is centred around a survey of healthcare industry leaders, conducted by Australian Healthcare Week (AHW) this autumn.

Sponsored by Q-bital, it compiles insight based on more than 120 interviews with experienced healthcare executives and investigates the key drivers of change that are currently shaping the Australian healthcare industry, including how the healthcare sector has prepared and responded to major disruption caused by Covid-19.

A key thread running through the report is resilience; through rethinking the design and build of healthcare facilities and futureproofing the sector; through training, up-skilling and retraining the healthcare workforce; and through innovation and transformation using digital initiatives as well as telehealth.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the results of this year’s survey reveal that the vast majority of respondents believe that Covid-19 will change the way that healthcare, hospitals and aged care facilities are designed and delivered in the future.

The report concludes that the pandemic has put future-proofing in the spotlight. A total of 64% of respondents already work in an environment where existing space has been transformed or expanded in response to the outbreak, while 57% of respondents have started taking steps towards future-proofing their healthcare facility to meet changing patient demands in future.

However, it is not just existing spaces which are being expanded to deal with the pandemic; some are looking outside the hospital’s walls and turning to flexible healthcare infrastructure, such as mobile and modular wards and operating theatres. When asked about the most important considerations are in designing a new health facility, ‘flexibility and expandability’ ranked second, with 20% of respondents citing this as the most important factor.

Download the latest edition of the State of the Industry Report for more unique insights into the state of Australian healthcare in 2020 and beyond.