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National Hospital Cost Data Collection

A key output of the Independent Health and Aged Care Pricing Authority (IHACPA) is the collection, validation, analysis and reporting of the National Hospital Cost Data Collection (NHCDC). This process is performed in conjunction with states and territories and private hospitals, who submit cost data to the NHCDC on an annual basis, known as a ‘round’.

The NHCDC is a unique collection and remarkable evidence base that is used across the Australian health system. The collection, for which IHACPA assumed responsibility in 2011, matches patient level activity with the costs incurred by hospitals in relation to this activity, and is the primary data collection used to develop the National Efficient Price (NEP) and National Efficient Cost (NEC) Determinations for the funding of public hospitals services.

To support consistency in the costing process, IHACPA works with stakeholders to develop and implement national costing standards.

The current version of the standards is the Australian Hospital Patient Costing Standards Version 4.1

NHCDC public sector

The National Hospital Cost Data Collection (NHCDC) for the public sector, collected through the states and territories, is the primary data collection used to develop the national efficient price. 

It is an annual and voluntary collection of public hospital data. To ensure it is robust for National Efficient Price and National Efficient Cost Determination, once received at the Independent Health and Aged Care Pricing Authority, the NHCDC undergoes validation, quality assurance checks and reporting to allow benchmarking. Each yearly collection includes an independent financial review and the production of a public hospital cost report that contains cost weight tables. 

Round 26 (financial year 2021–22)

Round 25 (financial year 2020–21)

Round 24 (financial year 2019–20)

NHCDC private sector

The Independent Health and Aged Care Pricing Authority works with private hospitals and private hospital groups, to collect the private sector National Hospital Cost Data Collection (NHCDC). The output of the collection includes a cost report, with cost weights for private admitted acute care services.

Round 25 (financial year 2020–21)

Round 24 (financial year 2019–20)

Round 23 (financial year 2018–19) 

Independent Financial Review

To ensure that the quality of NHCDC data is robust and fit for purpose, IHACPA commissions an Independent Financial Review (IFR) to assess whether all participating hospitals have included appropriate costs and patient activity.

Typically, the IFR report is published on IHACPA’s website each year alongside the NHCDC Report. Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on states, territories and health services, however, there was no IFR Report for Round 23.

Read previous IFR reports here.

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