International Health

Transforming health systems and lives in developing nations.  

Long-term essential training and health system development for Timor-Leste. How do you drive sustainable improvements in healthcare delivery and outcomes for developing nations? By building clinical and health system capability in collaboration with communities and government. That’s what our International Health programs do, with highly trained healthcare professionals living, working and building life-saving, self-sustaining clinical capability. On the ground. From the ground up. View our client stories.

About International Health Maternity ward staff

Our Australian healthcare professionals build healthcare capabilities in developing nations – capabilities that transform health systems and patient care. By working closely with the government and hospital community, our integrated on the ground approach to building healthcare skills, policies and systems not only transforms the patient experience, but also, fundamentally, the country’s healthcare culture.

Transforming healthcare and outcomes in Timor-Leste

We’ve been working with the Timorese Ministry of Health for 14 years to build life-saving healthcare skills and, just as imprtantly, implement self-sustaining, quality healthcare programs and processes. Notably, our Pathology Development Program, which began in 2004, has transformed pathology and phlebotomy at the Hospital Nacional Guido Valadares in Dili. In addition to improving quality and procurement processes, the program brought automated testing to the hospital’s laboratory. This increased the lab’s capacity more than 100 fold, providing faster, more reliable results and improving diagnoses, patient experiences and outcomes throughout the hospital. Following the success of the Pathology Development Program, we established the Nursing Development Program in 2010. 

Our short-term and long-term goals

We have two key goals. First, we aim to upskill frontline staff, improving basic healthcare delivery and outcomes. But we also have a big-picture mission to support our Timorese colleagues to put policies and infrastructure in place that ensure Timor-Leste’s healthcare system continually improves. 

In short, we aim to support the Timorese to build an integrated health system capability that will ensure patient experiences and patient outcomes improve year after year.

How do we do it? 

We do all this by working side-by-side with Timor- Leste’s healthcare community, particularly in and around Dili’s Hospital Nacional Guido Valadares.

A stable workforce is essential if we’re to achieve our long-term vision, which is why our healthcare training and development professionals commit to living and working for at least two years in Timor-Leste, learning the language (Tetum) and effectively becoming part of Timor-Leste’s healthcare community. Our team is supported by experts in quality, learning and development, leadership and clinical competence at our office in Melbourne, Victoria.

It’s this on-the-ground commitment and continuity that sets our programs apart, ensuring knowledge is transferred effectively to local staff, while cementing best practice and sustainable change at a systemic and cultural level.

Our programs Graduate Nursing Program

Practice change is the driving force behind everything
we do. Our work focuses on four core proficiencies:

  • Quality 
  • Education and Training 
  • Leadership and Management 
  • Clinical

We then apply this integrated capability thinking to each of our programs, which include:

  • The Core Competency Program. Providing training in essential knowledge and skills 
  • The Educator Program. Training Timorese educators tot rain other nurses.  
  • The Health Managers Program. Building healthcare system management capability. 

Crucially though, our team’s presence on-the-ground in Timor-Leste, combined with the unique way we’re funded by St John of God Health Care and our partners ConocoPhillips, means we’re able to create custom programs wherever a need arises. For instance, we developed an Executive Development Program designed specifically to support the development of a new role in the Timor hospital, Director of Nursing and Midwifery. 

Our impact

Our programs are changing health leadership in Timor-Leste through the development of policies, systems and the development of management-level capability to facilitate continual improvement in patient experience and clinical outcomes.

We’re embedding best practice into everyday healthcare. We’re giving healthcare workers more skills and confidence. We’re transforming the experience for patients and improving clinical outcomes, overcoming the innate wariness and even fear of hospital care that’s prevalent in Timorese culture.

 Client stories

Find out how we support our clients to reach their full potential and experience opportunities of their choice.

Make a contribution. Make a lasting difference.  

Whether you'd like to make a personal donation, become a corporate sponsor or join our team on the ground in Timor-Leste, we'd like to hear from you. 

Call us on (03) 9205 6500
Email us at

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