Services Australia

Services Australia, formerly and most widely known as the Department of Human Services (DHS), is a department of the Government of Australia responsible for delivering a range of welfare, health, child support payments and other services to the people of Australia. Services Australia delivers social security services through government programs and brands like Centrelink, Medicare, the PBS and Hearing Australia.[5] Australian citizens and permanent residents can access most services through their myGov account.

Services Australia

Department of Human Services' office at the Caroline Chisholm Centre in the ACT
Department overview
Formed26 October 2004 (2004-10-26)[1]
Preceding Department
  • Department of Human Services
JurisdictionCommonwealth of Australia
HeadquartersForrest, Australian Capital Territory[2]
Employees34,757 (at June 2014)[3]
Minister responsible
Department executive
Child agencies
Agency IDNAA CA 9610

The head of the department is the Secretary, currently Renée Leon PSM,[4] who is responsible to the Minister for Government Services, currently the Hon. Stuart Robert MP. Previously, this portfolio was held by Michael Keenan as Minister for Human Services.[6]


The Department of Human Services was created on 26 October 2004 as part of the Australian Government's Finance and Administration portfolio. At the time of its creation, it incorporated the Child Support Agency and CRS Australia, with the Human Services Legislation Amendment Act 2011 integrating Centrelink and Medicare.

The Secretary at the Department's establishment in 2004 was Patricia Scott.[7] Helen Williams was appointed Secretary of the Department in 2007.[8] Finn Pratt succeeded Williams in September 2009 after her retirement from the public service.[1][8]

The department was renamed Services Australia in machinery of government changes made by Prime Minister Scott Morrison on 29 May 2019[9] following the 2019 federal election.[10] As of 27 November 2019, DHS remains to operate under the existing branding, not under "Services Australia."


According to the Administrative Arrangements Order of 29 May 2019, Services Australia is responsible for administering the following legislation:[9]

  • Australian Hearing Services Act 1991
  • Human Services (Centrelink) Act 1997
  • Human Services (Medicare) Act 1973

See also


  1. CA 9004: Department of Human Services, Central Office, National Archives of Australia, retrieved 12 December 2013
  2. Towell, Noel (11 December 2013). "Centrelink boss Kathryn Campbell keeps three offices despite cutbacks". The Canberra Times. Fairfax Media. Archived from the original on 11 December 2013.
  3. Australian Public Service Commission (2014), Main features:APS at a glance, archived from the original on 5 October 2014
  4. "Secretary of the Department of Human Services". Department of Human Services. Commonwealth of Australia. Retrieved 9 November 2017.
  5. "About us". Department of Human Services. Retrieved 7 May 2013.
  6. "Minister for Human Services". Department of Human Services. Retrieved 15 February 2018.
  7. Howard, John (22 October 2004). "Appointment of Secretaries" (Press release). Archived from the original on 19 November 2013.
  8. Rudd, Kevin (13 August 2009). "Departmental secretaries and statutory office-holders, Canberra" (Press release). Archived from the original on 10 November 2013.
  9. "Administrative Arrangements Order" (PDF). Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. 29 May 2019. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  10. Donaldson, David (29 May 2019). "Administrative orders: Home Affairs to grow". The Mandarin. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
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