The Activity Based Funding Conference 2016 will offer a range of international and national keynote speakers. Details about speakers will be updated as information becomes available.

International speakers

 SGuterman_B+W Mr Stuart Guterman Stuart Guterman is a Senior Scholar in Residence at AcademyHealth in Washington, DC. From May 2005 through June 2015, he was a Vice President at the Commonwealth Fund, a private foundation that aims to promote improved access, higher quality, and greater efficiency, particularly for society’s most vulnerable. There, he led several programs, including special initiatives on Advancing Medicare and Controlling Health Care Costs, and the Program on Payment and System Reform, and served as Executive Director of the Commonwealth Fund Commission on a High Performing Health System. From 2002 to 2005, Mr. Guterman was Director of the Office of Research, Development, and Information at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the U.S. government agency responsible for setting policy for the country’s two largest public health programs. Prior to that, he was a Senior Analyst at the Congressional Budget Office, a Principal Research Associate at the Urban Institute, Deputy Director of the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, and Chief of Institutional Studies at the Health Care Financing Administration.  He holds an A.B. in Economics from Rutgers College and an M.A. in Economics from Brown University, and did further work toward the Ph.D. in Economics at the State University of New York at Stony Brook.
 JHeimig_web Dr Frank Heimig  Dr Frank Heimig is The CEO of InEK GmbH, the German Hospital-Reimbursement-Institute since its establishment in 2002. InEK is responsible for the algorithmic distribution of a budget of 70 billion Euros financing all 2000 private and public German hospitals.

Under Dr Heimig’s leadership, InEK developed the Mental Health Care Classification and Financing System for Germany as well as the current reimbursement system for financing hospital capital costs. He also successfully established close partnerships with other European states including Switzerland, Cyprus, Slovakia, and Greece to support their introduction of activity based hospital financing systems, based on the German-DRG-System.

Dr Heimig has also held various positions on advisory boards for the German Ministry of Health and Welfare and is currently one of the experts on the government’s commission on setting policy for nursing care in German hospitals.

Dr Heimig trained as a medical doctor, specialising in radiology and has valuable experience in senior positions of hospital administration and management. He holds a Ph.D. for a dissertation in medical informatics and studied computer science and mathematics at the University of the Saarland, Queens University Belfast and Trinity College Dublin.

 M_Rabenschlag(BW) Dr Michael Rabenschlag  Dr Michael Rabenschlag is Director of the Department of Economics at the Institute for the Hospital Financing System (InEK DRG Institute) in Germany. Michael has been with InEK since 2004 and established the National Cost Data Collection for the G-DRG reimbursement system in Germany. His main task is the Management of the National (Cost) Data Collection with ca 1.700 hospitals and 22m cases (Cost Data: 250 hospitals, 4.5m cases). Under his direction the costing guidelines were refined to further improve the data quality in the National Cost Data Collection over time.

Dr Michael Rabenschlag is Director of the Department of Economics at the Institute for the Hospital Financing System (InEK DRG Institute) in Germany. Michael has been with InEK since 2004 and established the National Cost Data Collection for the G-DRG reimbursement system in Germany. His main task is the Management of the National (Cost) Data Collection with ca 1.700 hospitals and 22m cases (Cost Data: 250 hospitals, 4.5m cases). Under his direction the costing guidelines were refined to further improve the data quality in the National Cost Data Collection over time.Michael also works as a lecturer in DRG reimbursement and cost calculation for M.B.A. classes in Health Care Management as well as for vocational training to hospital management. Michael is a member of several working groups and participates in the Ministry of Health for the improvement of the DRG reimbursement system. Prior to InEK, Michael worked at the German Hospital Association as Deputy Director Department of Hospital Financing, working in all areas of acute care and hospital planning. He was responsible for the introduction of national cost accounting guidelines and the preparation of the implementation of the DRG-System in Germany. Michael graduated in economics and econometrics (University of Kiel) and has a doctor´s degree in statistics.

National speakers

RAnderson_BW Mr Rob Anderson  Rob is the Acting Director of the ABM Reform project within the WA Department of Health. Prior to this role, Rob was the Manager for the Business Intelligence and Casemix Data ABM Reform workstream.  He is originally from South Australia where he developed a passion for Casemix and ABF and has held a variety of senior roles in WA Health at the Department of Health, the Fiona Stanley Hospital Commissioning Project, the Midland Health Campus Project and the North Metropolitan Health Service and Royal Perth Hospital.
 RAuld Mr Robin Auld Robin is currently the Manager of the Teaching Training and Research work stream at the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority. Robin has completed a Masters of International Public Health and most recently worked at the Commonwealth Department of Health.
 MCormack_web Mr Mark Cormack  Mark Cormack is a Deputy Secretary with the Department of Health within the Strategic Policy and Innovation Group (SPIG). Mark is responsible for strategic national health policy, portfolio strategies and international engagement. His National Program responsibilities include Primary Health, Mental Health, Public Hospital Funding agreements and dental. Mark has had a number of senior roles in the public healthcare system, including:

  • Member, Australian Health Ministers’ Advisory Council (AHMAC)
  • Chair, AHMAC Health Policy Priorities Principal Committee
  • Board director, National E Health Transition Authority.

Mark has worked in and for the public healthcare sector for over 30 years in various capacities as a health professional, senior manager, policy maker, planner, agency head and industry advocate. He has a Bachelor of Applied Science (University of Sydney) and a Master of Health Management (University of Wollongong).


 MCover (bw) Dr Myles Cover  Dr Myles Cover is a Technical Manager at the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA). He is the lead technical resource involved with the National Hospital Cost Data Collection (NHCDC). Myles’ background began in Physics, with a PhD from the University of Sydney. He has presented at conferences around the world and has published a number of papers in international journals. Prior to working at IHPA, Myles was an actuarial analyst in an actuarial consulting company.
 TCunningham_web Ms Toni Cunningham Toni Cunningham has over 20 years’ experience working in the health care industry with specialist experience in patient level costing, activity based funding and service planning for health service delivery. Recently returning to Queensland Health after a spate in a professional services organisation, Toni leads the teams in the technical aspects of funding and costing, whilst also looking at the levers in the system to derive improved outcomes from the investment in health services and continue efficient and effective healthcare delivery.


 ADamato-BW3 Mr Alfa D’Amato  In his current role, Alfa D’Amato is best known for leading the implementation of Activity Based Funding in NSW Health and its evolution to Activity Based Management.

Passionate about transforming data into insights for managing complex and efficient systems, Alfa has been pivotal in creating the comprehensive online ABM Portal program available to health workers, re-designing the clinical costing process and developing the NSW State Price methodology.

He is an Executive Member of the Patient Classification Systems International, a Member of the Institute of Public Accountants and has held a number of executive positions within NSW Health including NSW Health Deputy Chief Financial Officer.

Alfa has a Master of Professional Accounting, a Master in Health Services Management and a Master in Policy. However, not many people know that he is also a trained anthropologist and a former army officer.

 FranDiver (B&W-2) Ms Francis Diver  Frances Diver is the Deputy Secretary, Health Service Performance and Programs within the Department of Health and Human Services. In this position Frances is responsible for managing the governance and formal accountability arrangements, including the performance of public health services across the State of Victoria. Her responsibilities include; policy and program development for acute health and ambulance services, service planning, health data collections and has responsibility for quality and safety initiatives as well as clinical mental health. Victoria operates a devolved governance structure for health service delivery and Frances works extensively with Boards, senior management and clinicians across the sector to deliver the Government’s policy. In her role Frances also works closely with other government agencies and with relevant Ministers. She leads a Division of more than 300 staff and is directly accountable for a budget of approximately $9 billion. Frances has worked extensively within the health sector in clinical and managerial roles with over 30 years experience in metropolitan and rural health services, government, community based services, public health, unions and private hospitals.
 IHPA-JamesDownie (BW) Mr James Downie   James Downie is the Acting CEO of the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA). Prior to this James was the Executive Director, Activity Based Funding, leading the teams responsible for delivering the classification, costing and pricing functions of IHPA as well as the data acquisition activities. He previously held roles with the Victorian Department of Health, the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne and various technical and operational roles in the resources industry.
 Stephen5 Mr Stephen Duckett Stephen Duckett is Director of the Health Program at Grattan Institute. He has a reputation for creativity, evidence-based innovation and reform in areas ranging from the introduction of activity-based funding for hospitals, to new systems of accountability for the safety of hospital care. An economist, he is a Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia.
 Sean Heng_BW Mr Sean Heng  Sean Heng is a Mathematical/Statistical Analyst at the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA). He currently advises the IHPA pricing team across all streams with regards to technical pricing issues and advancing methodology. He has lead the model development for the subacute stream for the National Efficient Price 2014-15 and provided technical support for the Australian Mental Health care Classification.

Sean previously worked as a senior consultant within the PwC Actuarial department where he was involved with the Private NHCDC data collection and providing technical support in the development of the acute stream for the National Efficient Price 2015-16. His interest in ABF and health ignited while working with various government health bodies at PwC. He recently returned from a one month secondment with the Healthcare Pricing Office, Ireland.

 Capture Dr Robert Herkes Dr Robert Herkes is Clinical Director at the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care. He is a highly respected Senior Clinician and leader in Intensive Care Medicine, with extensive operating and leadership experience in the development, evolution and provision of critical care services at both state and national levels. Dr Herkes’ enthusiasm for clinical education and training while rounding has allowed numerous students, junior doctors and nurses to experience the possibility of true ongoing and collaborative multidisciplinary learning.

A comprehensive understanding of the imperatives of health services administrators and clinicians has allowed Dr Herkes to help influence the development and expansion of Critical Care Capacity and its place in modern hospital care.

Dr Herkes was previously the Director of Intensive Care Services at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, State Medical Director of the NSW Organ and Tissue Donation Service, and Chair of the NSW Critical Care Taskforce.

Dr Philip Hoyle Dr Philip Hoyle is Principal Clinical Advisor for the National Centre for Classification in Health at the University of Sydney. He is also Director of Medical Services for Royal North Shore Hospital in NSW Australia; a member IHPA Clinical Advisory Committee and is Chair of the Standards Committee of the Australian Council on Health Care Standards.

With a background in rural General Practice, Philip has over the last 20 years held a range of senior positions as Medical Director and/or General Manager of a number of large tertiary as well as rural hospitals and multi-hospital systems. As a born “lumper” he delights in connecting ideas and people up to see what happens.  He is keen to find the precise mixture of quality, governance and funding systems that spontaneously explodes.

 Aling_BWweb2 Dr Amanda Ling  Dr Amanda Ling has a wealth of knowledge and experience gained from a diverse background in public and private health. Her current position is Deputy CEO for Joondalup Health Campus, Ramsay Health, a 650 bed private public partnership including a 145 bed private hospital. Amanda has previously had roles as Clinical Lead for ABF and Director of the Office of Safety & Quality for the WA Department of Health, and Executive Director Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital. Prior to these roles, Amanda held the position of National Director of Clinical Services for Mayne Hospitals. She has also held other positions in Victoria, including: Executive Director – Medical Services with Inner and Eastern Health Care Network at Maroondah Hospital, and Network Operating Suite Manager with Womens’ and Childrens’ Healthcare Network, encompassing responsibility for acute, sub-acute and community services at both hospital and network levels. Amanda has remained committed to improving patient outcomes through clinical governance, performance management, research and analytics, and ensuring there is a patient focused culture. Amanda also has significant experience with activity based funding and casemix, and has held positions with the health information consulting business 3M, and has been the Clinical Lead for the ABF implementation for the WA Department of Health.
AMacDonald_web A/Prof Alasdair MacDonald   

Alasdair MacDonald is a General, Acute Care Medicine and Stroke Physician and is past President of the Adult Medicine Division of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP). He has a small private practice, is Director of Medicine at the Launceston General Hospital and Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Tasmania. He is a past President of Internal Medicine Society of Australia and New Zealand, chairs the RACP College Council and also sits on their Advisory Committee on Policy and Advocacy. Alasdair is involved in physician training and has been a member of the RACP National Examination Panel for the last nine years. In 2011 he was appointed to the National Lead Clinician Group, is the Chair of the Clinical Advisory Committee to the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority, on the Clinical Standards Advisory Committee to the Australian Commission for Safety and Quality in Healthcare and the Hospital Mortality Advisory Committee of the National Health Performance Authority.


 JMaiolo Mr Julian Maiolo Julian is a Director at Paxton Partners and has over 25 years of experience as both an industry executive and senior consultant in the Australian health care sector. His knowledge of the sector extends across strategic, operational and technical domains of health care management with a focus on activity based management and costing, financial and organisational performance management, improvement and redesign.

Prior to his role as Director at Paxton Partners and KPMG, Julian had 15 years of direct industry experience including executive roles as a Chief Financial Officer, Executive Director of Operations and Executive Director of Corporate and Clinical Support Services of Melbourne Health. Julian holds a degree in Economics and membership of the Australian Society of CPAs

Julian is currently leading the consulting consortium to deliver IHPA’s teaching, training and research costing study.

 SNeville_BW Dr Sarah Neville  Dr Sarah Neville is the Director, Pricing at the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA).  She was previously the lead analyst for the non-admitted stream for the National Efficient Price 2014-15 and the acute stream for the National Efficient Price 2015-16. Sarah’s background is in mathematics and statistics, she holds a PhD in statistics from the University of Wollongong. She was invited to present doctoral research at the University of Oxford in 2012. Sarah recently spent six weeks in North East Arnhem Land working with Miwatj Health Aboriginal Corporation developing better ways to communicate key health statistics to board members, elders and the broader community. Before her time at IHPA, Sarah was a cadet at the Australian Bureau of Statistics and a Biostatistician at the NSW Department of Health.
JNobbs_BW Ms Jennifer Nobbs  Jennifer Nobbs is the Executive Director of Activity Based Funding at the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA), managing the teams responsible for delivering the classification, costing and pricing functions of IHPA, as well as the data acquisition activities. Prior to this, Jennifer was Director of Mental Health Care at IHPA, joining the agency from NSW where she was a senior advisor to the NSW Minister for Mental Health and Healthy Lifestyles, and manager of national and state priorities in the Mental Health and Drug & Alcohol Office at the NSW Ministry of Health. Jennifer previously worked in the UK at the Ministry of Justice, managing legislation to develop a new regulatory structure for the legal services sector.
 JOC_web John O’Connor  John O’Connor is a qualified accountant with more than 25 years’ experience in the healthcare industry in senior Executive finance roles in the public, private and State Government health system. John has significant experience in the leadership of finance functions, financial management and compliance, monitoring financial performance, hospital costing systems and the development and analysis of a range of complex business cases.

John has held a number of senior roles including Executive Director Finance – SA Health, Director of Finance at Monash Health and Deputy Director Finance at Ashford Community Hospital. John currently operates a specialised healthcare consultancy practice that is providing financial management support to a number Local Health Districts in NSW.

Mr Neville Onley  Neville is currently the Director of the Activity Based Funding (ABF) Taskforce which was established in September 2011 by NSW Ministry of Health to oversee and implement the ABF aspects of the National Health Reform across the NSW Health System. Prior to this Neville held the position of Director Financial Services for the Southern Clinical Support Cluster and was Director of Finance and Corporate Services for the former South Eastern Sydney and Illawarra Area Health Service. Neville has extensive experience in reform processes having been involved in the National Rail Reforms across Australia, the Reform of NSW Ports and Waterways and the Sydney Olympic Games.
 J Pearse_web Mr Jim Pearse  Jim has been active participant and leader in health policy issues and research both within and outside of government.  Since 2003, he has lead the consulting company Health Policy Analysis. Prior to establishing the company, Jim spent 18 years working in various health and social policy areas within the public sector.  Professionally, Jim is a health economist (Master of Science, Health Economics) at the University of York in England. He was a 2000-2001 Commonwealth Fund Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy, spending 12 months at the Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University Baltimore, where he studied the use of risk adjustment approaches in payment systems. Jim’s publications and research include population based resource allocation models, including the use of risk adjustment in capitation payment, the fiscal relationship between federal and state governments, activity based classifications, efficiency of hospitals, costs of providing health services to Indigenous peoples, program evaluation, measurement of health system performance, and international comparison of health systems.
 JPilla-BW  Mr John Pilla John is Director of KPMG’s National Health, Ageing and Human Services Practice. He is an experienced health services professional having worked in various roles at state, national and international levels. John maintains a long-standing role in Activity Based Funding (ABF) with 15 years spent in the sector within Australia and internationally. He was responsible for the technical development of first version of Australian DRGs and since then, has had responsibility for state based ABF operations and undertaken several assignments locally and abroad including in New Zealand, Singapore, Germany and Slovenia.

Currently, John is the Chair of the national DRG Technical Group that provides advice to the University of Sydney that is responsible for the on-going development of the Australia Refined Diagnosis Related Group Classification.

 Ian Pollock _web Mr Ian Pollock  Ian Pollock is the Director of Activity Based Funding at the Northern Territory Department of Health. He has 18 years of experience in healthcare, gained mostly in the Northern Territory which has its own unique set of challenges. Ian specialises in costing and funding and has worked in roles ranging from Business Manager, Director of Hospital Infrastructure, Director Acute Care Systems Performance and Chief Financial Officer of NT Department of Health. Ian’s major achievements include the service development of radiation therapy and remote renal services in the Northern Territory, implementation of a territory-wide costing system at NT Health in 2015 and managing the NHCDC submission for the Northern Territory from 2001-2004. Ian’s professional qualifications include a Masters in Health Administration from the University of NSW, a Graduate Diploma from the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and a Bachelor Business from the Charles Sturt University.
 PSivabalan_web Dr Prabhu Sivabalan  Dr Prabhu Sivabalan is an associate professor in management accounting in the UTS Business School.  His research interests are in the application of core accounting concepts such as budgeting and costing to innovative and far-reaching contexts not traditionally investigated in accounting, such as entrepreneurship and high innovation environments, accounting/costing in healthcare, as well as the role of accounting in hydrology and agriculture.  Prabhu has published numerous academic research articles, industry reports and has advised/trained large organisations including 7media, CSR and Citigroup. He also researches and lectures in Oxford University and the London School of Economics and Political Sciences in financial management and the impact of accounting on human behavior.
 SSolomon_web Mr Shane Solomon  Shane has over 30 years of international and national healthcare management expertise. In April 2013 Shane was appointed to establish Telstra Health. Prior to joining Telstra, Shane was KPMG’s National Partner in Charge, Healthcare, where he worked with State and Commonwealth Governments, along with private sector health organisations. He also spent five years as Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Hospital Authority, managing Hong Kong’s 57,000 public hospital staff, where he implemented significant funding and service quality reforms, including the development of a comprehensive integrated e‐health system. Shane is also Chair of the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA).
StatiT Mr Stathi Tsangaris  Stathi Tsangaris is Director, Hospital Costing at the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA) and is charged with leading the team responsible for overseeing all components of collecting hospital cost data across all product streams.  Stathi was formerly NHCDC Technical Manager, IHPA, managing the development of costing technical material and supported the development of the NHCDC. He joined IHPA from the Northern Territory Department of Health, where he was Manger of Performance Reporting and prior to that, Research Officer at the Northern Territory Department of Local Government.
TrentYeendB&W Dr Trent Yeend Dr Trent Yeend is a Senior Advisor at the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA). He has been with IHPA since its establishment in 2011 and led the development of the pricing models for the first two years of the National Efficient Price.

Since then Trent has remained involved in IHPA’s annual pricing cycle and has also been active in areas of health classification development, including the refinement of the AR-DRG classification system where he was the principal technical contributor to the development of a new episode clinical complexity model within version 8.0 of the classification. More recently he has been involved in the development of the first version of the Australian Mental Health Care Classification.

Prior to IHPA, Trent worked in the Australian Department of Health and Ageing, providing policy modelling advice across the areas of primary care, acute care, health workforce and aged care.

Trent holds Bachelor and PhD degrees in mathematics, and previously worked as a mathematics lecturer and research academic at the University of Newcastle. He also spent a year as research academic and teaching assistant at the University of Iowa USA.