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Aim of the clinical community of practice

Health and Social Policy, Ministry of Health (HSPB) will provide an opportunity for sharing of ideas, strategies, local solutions and concerns with respect to COVID-19 pandemic preparedness.

The community of practice will be multidisciplinary and include representation from members of the NGO Advisory Committee (NGOAC). It will enable NGO service providers and district representatives from NGOAC to provide expert advice and guidance to the system, and to escalate matters that require a statewide or system response.

The aim of these sessions is to:

  • support NSW Health funded NGOs to network and share strategies, local solutions and issues with respect to pandemic preparedness for the NGO sector
  • identify, prioritise and escalate issues related to COVID-19 which are actually or potentially affecting NSW Health funded NGOs providing community care that require a statewide or system response
  • review and provide expert advice on guidelines, resources and other information
  • share Ministry approved advice and resources on the response to COVID-19 that can be circulated within the Ministry, districts and networks.


  • Executive sponsor: Deb Willcox, Deputy Secretary, Health System Strategy and Resources
  • Clinical lead: Robert Stirling, Chief Executive Officer, Network of Alcohol and other Drugs Agency (NADA)
  • Community of practice secretariat: Nishtha Dwivedi, Senior Policy Officer, HSPB
  • Key stakeholders: NGOAC members.

HSPB will escalate issues raised by the community of practice to Strategic Reform and Planning. Key information will be collected and distributed through MOH-COVID19-ClinicalAdvice@health.nsw.gov.au, which will be monitored by Strategic Reform and Planning.

Collated issues/advice will be escalated by Ms Willcox through to the Public Health Emergency Operations Centre (PHEOC) and/or the State Health Emergency Operations Centre (SHEOC) as appropriate.

PHEOC and SHEOC responses will be provided to Strategic Reform and Planning and then to the community of practice secretariat(s).

Non-Government organisation lead

Each community of practice will have a clinical lead appointed by Deb Willcox, Deputy Secretary, Health System Strategy and Resources. In the NGO community of practice, Larry Pierce, Chief Executive of NADA has been appointed as the lead.

The clinical lead will:

  • assist with the facilitation of the community of practice
  • work with peers in the NGO sector to share ideas and develop appropriate response strategies
  • provide expert advice and guidance to the system and Ministry as required
  • escalate relevant matters to the Ministry that require a statewide or system response
  • provide expert advice to respond to media enquiries.

This community of practice scope is not

A group which is able to endorse statewide changes or make decisions that impacts a unit or system or allocate funding to recommendations.


This community of practice is open to all NGOAC members. However, membership may be extended more broadly to include all interested NSW Health staff as well as professional colleges, private providers/clinicians and other non-government organisations as appropriate to the clinical speciality.

To join the community of practice participants should email MOH-NGOGrantProgram@health.nsw.gov.au.

Frequency of the community of practice

Monthly on the third Friday from 10am. Meetings commenced 26 March 2020 using Skype for business/ teleconference. Skype for business details or teleconference details will be attached to the calendar invite.

Guidelines and resources

Current as at: Monday 17 October 2022
Contact page owner: Health Protection NSW