College of Health and Medicine (CHM)

Click the below links to access the ANU College of Health and Medicine change management process:

You can also access the ANU Recovery Plan and College and Portfolio plans.


If you have a question regarding the CHM change management process or the CHM recovery plan, please send your comments and feedback to


Staff and their family members can access free support and counselling through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which can be reached on 1800 808 374 (this number operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week).

Frequently asked questions

Published at 2.30pm on Thursday 1 April 2021.

  1. Are suggestions welcome for the new nomenclature? How do you intend to transition any name changes - surely this will cost money and staff resources?
    All suggestions are welcome and will be considered as part of the consultation process. This includes suggestions about names for the College and Schools. Following the consultation, the College will release an Implementation Plan, which will outline confirmed changes and a timeline for delivery. It is likely that complex changes will take some time to be implemented; more straightforward changes will be implemented as soon as practicable.
  2. Have you considered the reputation of ANU? Whatever money we save, we could lose in reputation as the leading institution for national research?
    To fulfil our mandate as the national university, we must invest in, and insist on, excellence at the ANU. In responding to the ANU Recovery Plan, we must make difficult choices about what we will continue to invest in to ensure we can continue to be excellent. The reduction in revenue available requires us to narrow our focus to ensure we not only survive but we thrive in areas where we continue to invest.
  3. Where does TRANSFORM sit in this?
    TRANSFORM, otherwise known as the College Strategic Plan, was initiated at a time when funds were expected to be available to invest significantly into Health and Medicine at ANU. As the funding landscape changed dramatically in 2020, the College Strategic Plan adapted taking into consideration the impact of the pandemic on future funding opportunities. The College Strategic Plan has now converged with the College Recovery Plan and takes into consideration the financial imperatives of the College and University. It is still our 10-year plan, but with a sharper focus on efficiencies and providing a foundation for growth. We are doing the hard work of reorganising and laying the foundations, so that we can flourish into the future and serve the nation's interests. The changes outlined in the proposal incorporate those elements that are necessary to achieve those goals in the long term.
  4. What is our budget imperative?
    The College allocation for 2021 is $55M. In this Change Proposal, we are working to ensure we can meet our budget imperative by reducing our overall operational cost base. Externally funded grants and projects are not impacted by the proposed changes.
  5. What metrics were used when considering distributing costs across schools as opposed to dissolving the Department?
    When considering how to apportion the cost reductions, many factors were considered including our national role, strategic priorities, revenue potential and growth areas, as well as maintaining our key disciplinary areas of medicine and biomedicine, psychology and population health.
  6. Other than the salary savings in this document, how else do these changes assist in managing our budget? It is not clear how the substantial structural changes will increase efficiencies.
    Beyond salary savings, we anticipate that the proposed changes will deliver greater incremental efficiencies through service delivery: reduced administrative layers, consistent approaches, shared platforms, aligned processes, and greater distribution of workloads and expertise. The changes proposed will enable optimal arrangements in place, for example, the Development Services Hub, to support revenue generation and investment. Improved retention and career paths for professional staff will reduce significant turnover costs for the College.
  7. Given there is a lot to consider in this proposal, how should we prioritise our feedback?
    We do not have all the answers, and nor do we expect to during this consultation period. We do however need to prioritise the fundamental components of the Change Proposal - the College structure, the overall staffing profile, the areas of focus, and how we want to operate moving forward, so we ask that your feedback consider these. Additional layers, such as how we might go about implementing a change, will be further developed as part of the implementation of any confirmed changes.
  8. Are all the recommendations in the proposal confirmed? Would there be any chance that some of the decisions to be re-considered?
    Nothing in this proposal is pre-determined or set in stone. This is a genuine consultation process and the College is seeking input and ideas on what is proposed. All feedback provided will be considered and will inform the future structure for the College that will be outlined in the Implementation Plan.
  9. Do you have a pathway to make changes in the current proposal during or after the consultation period? If so, please make it clear to us how it is going to be done.
    All feedback from our community including that of our external stakeholders and the broader community is being carefully considered. Following the close of consultation, this feedback will be reviewed and will inform the preparation of the Implementation Plan. The Implementation Plan will confirm any changes to the College and identify where further development and design work may be required. It will also outline the process for further input and engagement.
  10. What is ANU doing to support staff affected by disestablished positions?
    Prior to the release of the Change Proposal, we have met with the staff members whose positions would be impacted by the proposed changes and who may be unable to transfer to the proposed new structure. We are and will continue to work closely with affected staff to assist them with any questions they have and to understand the options they would like to explore.

    The University's highest priority is the health, wellbeing and safety of our community. We aim to provide our community with support so we can help each other get through this challenging time.

    Staff and their family members can access free support and counselling through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which can be reached on 1800 808 374 (this number operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week). Staff can also contact the ANU Advisers to Staff who provide free, confidential and professional counselling and advice to staff on-campus in dealing with work-related or personal issues that may be affecting their work. 

    These services are available to us all and can help provide you with advice about the things that you can do to help support you during times of change. A full list of the University support services is available here.

    In addition to this, our College has developed further resources and tools to help support each other through change (available on our internal staff channels). A range of consultation forums and confidential wellbeing drop-in sessions are underway to support our community.  We will continue to ensure that staff are involved in this process and provided with as much support as possible.
  11. How does this new structure foster a close working relationship between academic and professional staff?
    The proposed structure is designed to ensure professional support services are adequately aligned with the strategic priorities of the College and the distribution of major activities. It is also intended to ensure services are high quality, consistent and provided by the most appropriate staff (academic or professional) from the most appropriate location, whether that be at elbow to the end user or co-located remotely with similar service functions.
  12. How will the College support ECRs and how do you intend to incorporate ECR representation?
    Our early and mid-career researchers (EMCR) are an important lifeblood of our University, and bring new ideas and vibrancy. Attracting, supporting and retaining EMCRs is key to building an outstanding academy, which will always be our priority, and we are committed to working with our EMCRs to co-design how best to support each to flourish. We will continue to champion EMCR representation on our College Committees such as the CHM Research Committee, and College and University support activities, such as the NECTAR program, and look for new opportunities and ways to advance their careers.
  13. What will the governance arrangements be? How will ANU Medicine (sitting at College level with predominantly professional staff members drawing on dispersed teaching contributions) ensure that the necessary governance arrangements and consultations required for continuing accreditation occur regarding the medical program?
    What has been put forward for consultation is a proposal that outlines some clear concepts for consideration. Further detail such as governance will be worked through and developed through the implementation phase, and once any proposed changes have been confirmed or modified.
  14. How is this any better than what we had?
    The College must reduce our operating cost base by 15%. To fulfil our mandate as the national university we must in responding to the ANU Recovery Plan, invest in, and insist on, excellence at ANU.  Through this change process, we must make difficult choices about what we will continue to invest in to ensure we can continue to be excellent. The reduction in revenue available requires us to narrow focus to ensure we not only survive but also thrive in areas where we continue to invest. Redesign is essential to meet financial imperatives. The Change Proposal represents a path to emerge strongly from the pandemic-induced recovery situation, and to lay the foundations to thrive and flourish in the longer-term.
  15. Can you please explain how the creation of new positions and the acquisition of new infrastructure in the CHEL would be cost neutral or cost saving?
    The new positions proposed are required to fill gaps created by the consolidation and to support the proposed new organisational arrangements. Careful consideration was given to any new positions proposed to ensure they are cost effective, are required to meet the business needs of the College and not duplicated elsewhere.
  16. What is the proposed timeline for the implementation of the worst-case scenario?
    The consultation period has been extended and will now close Friday 9 April 2021. Following close of the consultation period, an Implementation Plan will be developed. It is anticipated The Implementation Plan will be released the week commencing 26 April 2021. The proposed commencement of implementation is week commencing 3 May 2021 (indicative).  Given the overall financial position of the University, there is no room for the College to exceed our 2021 budget allocation. This means any delays in implementation will increase the challenge of meeting our financial targets in 2021.
  17. How are we engaging with stakeholders and students?
    The College Executive are in contact with our key stakeholders, including ACT and Federal Government, and industry-related partners and organisations. We are encouraging them, and members of the broader community to actively participate in our consultation process and we welcome any feedback.A number of student forums have been held and we will continue to listen to and engage with our students through this consultation.
  18. Will there be opportunities to check how the proposed structures and names will be understood by, and resonate with, the community and other stakeholders?
    All feedback from our community, including that of our stakeholders and the broader community will be considered. Following this, an Implementation Plan will be developed. Components of the Implementation Plan may allow for further engagement and co-design with our community, through forums such as roundtables and focus groups. This will be reflected in the Implementation Plan.
  19. There are new administrative positions in proposal – how do you justify adding new admin salaries when researchers are losing their jobs?
    The new positions proposed are required to fill gaps created by the consolidation and to support the proposed new organisational arrangements. Careful consideration was given to any new positions proposed to ensure they are cost effective, required to meet the new business needs of the College, and not duplicated elsewhere.
  20. Many staff are on a fixed term contract. What will the staffing profile look like over the course of the next few years as most of those contracts start expiring?
    We are committed to ensuring we have a sustainable model for both tenured positions and the short term and grant funded positions that allow for attraction, renewal and the flourishing of a research environment. This proposal will enable a future where we can improve job security and give greater clarity for career paths.
  21. Does this mean that current students' testamurs will show that they graduated from a "College" of ANU rather than ANU "Medical School"?
    The proposed changes will not have an effect on a student testamur or official transcript.  Students' Testamurs (the formal certificate of your award) do not include the College or School from which you graduated. It will continue to show ‘ANU PhD’ or ‘ANU Masters of …’ or ‘ANU Bachelor of…’   The University procedure for Academic Statements is available here.
  22. Has consideration been given to merging parts of the College or CHM with other Colleges, such as College of Science?
    The College of Health and Medicine was formed in 2017 to strengthen prioritise Health and Medicine at ANU. Separation of administrative services from the College of Science commenced in early 2020 but was paused when the impact of the pandemic was realised and in support of the ANU Recovery Plan. This Change Proposal considers what can still be reasonably shared between the Colleges to ensure cost efficiencies while also ensuring the needs and goal of CHM can be met now and into the future.
  23. What is Indigenous-led governance?
    Indigenous-led governance represents the College’s intention to ensure Indigenous perspectives and voices are celebrated and heard through appropriate governance models within the College. It is proposed that Indigenous activities would operate under an Indigenous governance framework that would have relevance to the whole college, in our research and education. An Associate Dean of First Nations would work with the Executive and ANU Vice President, First Nations. There is an opportunity to learn from and be guided by Indigenous people, systems and belief. We want to be a leader in Indigenous health and wellbeing and will progress what this might look like moving forward.
  24. One of the things the School does really well is to integrate research and teaching. I am just wondering if there is a separation, at least in the structure of the research and the teaching, or the clinical side. Do you see those connections being maintained as they appear quite separate on the page?
    This proposal presents an approach whereby all academics that have a teaching and research component to their role would have a home in one of the two research schools. All academics who are primarily teaching appointments could be appointed directly to the College and coordinated through the Deputy Dean and the Centre for Health Education and Leadership. There isn't an expectation that the structure will change the way that academics or teachers pursue their roles rather that it would enable the best way for academics to do that. We are a research-based university, but we also have to be really good at teaching so that we give our students the best experience. With the right structure, comes the opportunity to nuance it to individual needs and requirements that support the amount of teaching and research that each individual does.