The University of Technology, Sydney will provide new courses for health service planners from 2010. The Departments of Health in NSW and Queensland have teamed up and chosen the bid from UTS to develop and deliver three university courses in health services planning. Both states are seeking to enhance and sustain capacity in planning and development of health services by building a workforce with tailored and formal qualifications in health services planning. In close consultation with both departments and senior practising health services planners, UTS's course curriculum and learning methodologies will produce graduates who can guide health services through the complex challenges faced by Australia and other countries. UTS health faculty Dean Professor John Daly said the two health departments chose UTS after a competitive tender process. As two of the largest health services in Australia, the departments were convinced postgraduate courses, together with professional development short courses were essential to produce the next generation of expert health services planners. He said a review conducted by the departments in 2008 identified a core set of attributes for health service planners that are best provided by a university, with a teaching team focused on providing world class education in health service planning competencies. "Health service planners need to be competent in identifying health needs and issues," Professor Daly said. "They need to be able to develop goals and strategies, set priorities, select appropriate interventions and manage change. They must perform their role in a highly complex, robust and volatile health system that has many stakeholders and influences. "UTS was chosen for its proven strength and staff expertise in contemporary health services management, excellence in education and flexible methods of course delivery." The successful bid was prepared by the UTS Centre for Health Services Management. The program will cater for health service planners with a range of skill levels, from experienced planners wishing to strengthen their skills or obtain formal qualifications to recently appointed planners with little knowledge in the field. Health service planners from interstate, rural and remote areas, and those without undergraduate degrees, will be able to enrol in the program. UTS Director of Health Services Management Programs Richard Baldwin said working with health services across Australia offered unique challenges and opportunities for developing an innovative approach to curriculum. "We are excited by the challenges it offers, and believe that other state and territory health departments will quickly see the benefit of our courses and support their staff to enrol leading to a truly national program," Mr Baldwin said. "UTS prides itself on stepping out of the square in developing practice-oriented courses, working in partnership with professions and developing innovative educational models to ensure our graduates contribute immediately to their workplace. "As the provision of health services continues to be a major focus here and around the world with rapid changes in technology and population, these courses will prove invaluable to making sure service provision is properly planned and services are provided cost effectively. Both departments will support health services' staff who wish to study in these courses."