Joint Health Command (Australia)

The Joint Health Command (JHC) is led by the dual-hatted Commander Joint Health and Surgeon General of the Australian Defence Force and is responsible for the delivery of military medicine and joint healthcare services to Australian Defence Force personnel, including military psychiatry and rehabilitation services. The JHC is also responsible for providing strategic health policy, the development of the health preparedness of ADF personnel for operations, and the coordination of health units for deployment in support of operations.

The Commander Joint Health is responsible to the Chief of Joint Capabilities whilst deployed health units are responsible to the Chief of Joint Operations. The JHC is staffed by Australian Defence Force active and reserve personnel, Department of Defence public servants, and contracted health professionals.[1][2][3]

Joint Health Command
Country Australia
BranchAustralian Defence Force Joint Capabilities Group
RoleMilitary health
Garrison/HQCampbell Park Offices, Canberra


Pacific Partnership

The Joint Health Command has contributed personnel to the United States Pacific Fleet's Pacific Partnership, a humanitarian assistance initiative, since 2005.

In 2010, 25 personnel of the Joint Health Command, supported by HMAS Labuan and HMAS Tarakan acting as forward operating platform for remote medical and dental clinics, deployed to North Maluku and assisted in medical treatment for over 5000 patients and 150 surgeries onboard USNS Mercy.

AUSMTF Uruzgan

In 2008, the health personnel from the Australian Army and the Royal Australian Air Force provided two rotations of 10 surgical and intensive care personnel in support of the Dutch Role 2 (Enhanced) Medical Treatment Facility (MTF) also called the Uruzgan Medical Centre located in Kamp Holland in Tarin Kowt, the capital of the southern Uruzgan province known as AUSMTF teams.[4]


The JHC exercises technical and financial control of Australian Defence Force health units.


The JHC is staffed by medical, dental and allied health professionals. These staff may also provide garrison health services to ADF members while they are not on deployment. A total of 1699 health practitioners work in garrison health services comprising 403 public servants, 510 defence personnel, and 786 contractors working on a sessional basis. The Joint Health Command is made up of the:

  • Garrison Health Operations Branch which is responsible for the delivery and management of healthcare to ADF personnel within Australia and on non-operational postings overseas.
  • Mental Health, Psychology and Rehabilitation Branch which provides mental health support across occupational psychology, rehabilitation services, and mental health clinical programs.
  • Health Capability Branch which oversees health resources and logistics, pharmacy, workforce development and training, and strategic health capabilities.
  • Strategic Health Coordination Branch which oversees family health, health and medical research, and eHealth data and information management.
  • Chair of Military Surgery and Medicine is a professional position held jointly at the University of Queensland, the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital and the Department of Defence to lead a research program in trauma medicine and surgery relevant to the Australian Defence Force.

Regional Health Services

The JHC's delivery of garrison health services is via a regional structure for medical facilities through Regional Health Servcies (RHS) that provide the basis for healthcare administration. JHC manages 104 garrison health facilities.[5]

Central New South Wales (JHU-CNSW)

  • Albatross Health Centre
  • HMAS Creswell
  • Holsworthy Health Centre
  • Kuttabul Health Centre
  • Randwick Health Centre
  • Tobruk Clinic
  • Victoria Barracks Clinic Sydney
  • Watson Clinic


  • Butterworth Clinic
  • Duntroon Clinic
  • Duntroon Health Centre
  • Harman Clinic
  • Kapooka Health Centre
  • Kapooka Clinic
  • Russell Health Centre
  • Weston Clinic
  • Wagga Health

Victoria and Tasmania (JHU-VICTAS)

  • Albury Wodonga Health Centre
  • Anglesea Clinic
  • Cerberus Health Clinic
  • East Sale Health Clinic
  • Laverton Clinic
  • Puckapunyal Health Centre
  • Simpson Health Centre
  • Victoria Barracks Clinic Melbourne

Western Australia and South Australia (JHU-WASA)

  • Campbell Health Centre
  • Edinburgh Health Centre
  • Keswick Clinic
  • Leeuwin Health Centre
  • Pearce Health Centre
  • Stirling Health Centre
  • Stirling SUMU Clinic
  • Taylor Clinic
  • Woodside Clinic

Northern Territory (JHU-NT)

  • Darwin Health Centre
  • Larrakeyah Health Centre
  • Robertson Health Centre
  • Tindal Health Centre

Northern Queensland (JHU-NQ)

  • Cairns Health Centre
  • Lavarack Health Centre
  • Lavarack East Clinic
  • Porton Clinic
  • Townsville Health Centre
  • Tully Clinic

South Queensland (JHU-SQ)

  • Amberley Health Centre
  • Canungra Clinic
  • Cabarlah Clinic
  • Enoggera Clinic
  • Enoggera Clinic East
  • Enoggera Health Centre
  • Oakey Health Centre

Northern New South Wales (JHU-NNSW)

  • Glenbrook Clinic
  • Penguin Health Centre
  • Penguin SUMU Clinic
  • Richmond Health Centre
  • Singleton Health Centre
  • Tamworth Clinic
  • Waterhen Clinic
  • Williamtown Health Centre


Rank Name Postnominals Service Term began Term ended
Major General Colin Gurner AO, CBE, ED Army 1977 1979
Major General William Rodgers AO, OBE Army 1985 1990
Air Vice Marshal Michael Miller AO RAAF 1990 1992
Major General David Rossi AO Army 1992 1996
Air Vice Marshal Graeme Moller AM RAAF 1996 1998
Major General John Pearn AM, RFD Army 1998 2001
Air Vice Marshal Bruce Short AM RAAF 2001 2005
Rear Admiral Graeme Shirtley RAN 2005 2008
Major General Paul Alexander AO Army 2008 2011
Rear Admiral Robyn Walker AM RAN 2011 2015
Air Vice Marshal Tracy Smart AO RAAF 2015[6]

See also


  1. ^ "Home: Defence Health : Department of Defence". 15 March 2013. Retrieved 9 September 2018.
  2. ^ Main features of the medical services of the armed forces of Australia Medical Corps International Forum
  3. ^ "An introduction to Defence health care" (PDF). Retrieved 9 September 2018.
  4. ^ Dutch Role 2 (Enhanced) Medical Treatment Facility, AUSMTF, Uruzgan Medical Centre ADF Health December 2008 – Volume 9 Number 2
  5. ^ "Regional Health Services: Garrison Health Operations". Department of Defence. Retrieved 10 January 2018.
  6. ^ "Biography Commander JHC: About Joint Health Command". Department of Defence. 7 January 2014. Retrieved 10 January 2018.

External links

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Australian Defence Organisation
Australian Defence Force
Royal Australian Navy
Australian Army
Royal Australian Air Force
Department of Defence

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