Launceston will soon have a sense of what the health sector buys, and where from, in a bid to better support local business.
The Launceston Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the Northern Tasmanian Development Corporation and the Regional Australia Institute, will commission a study into the economic impact of the health sector in the state's North.
It will look at how health infrastructure is supplied to the industry, and whether the state has any gaps to could be filled to better support local businesses.
Chief executive Neil Grose said the chamber had been working with public and private health providers and researchers for some time, with a view to further understanding the business opportunities in the health sector.
"We're going to be looking at what the supply chain in Launceston is, the mapping of that, but really putting that emphasis on where the money goes and flows," he said.
"The health system, quite often, is marked by controversy of health outcomes. But we don't understand, nor appreciate the amazing impact that the health economy stands to benefit in Tasmania."
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Mr Grose said the health industry was he city's largest employer, with more than 30 per cent of the state's budget spent on health.
The study aims to identify what the supply chain is for the health industry, and then how Launceston can keep developing those.
"Then the opportunities might arise out of that. As soon as we understand what it is, we'll have a better understanding of what the opportunities are," Mr Grose said.
Mr Grose said the chamber was very careful to not gain government funding, but that the government was aware of the study.
"We will always look for the opportunities and where businesses can grow. We don't really need the permission of the government to do that."
Regional Australia Institute co-chief executive Kim Houghton will help with the study. He said similar studies had been completed before.
"We've done some broad coverage of the role of health infrastructure in local economies on the mainland. But we haven't ever had the opportunity to dig into those health supply chains," he said.
Chief executive Maree Tetlow said NTDC had supported the concept of better servicing the health and community sector, using local industry, for some time.
"This supply chain mapping will identify where the opportunities are to develop new products and services to supply the burgeoning health sector," she said. "This is about considering the health sector as an economic opportunity as well as an important community service."
The study, which is costing less than $100,000, will take a couple of months, with most research happening in September.
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