Records Authority 2012/00176080

Organ and Tissue Authority

Program Delivery

May 2012

This is an accurate reproduction of the authorised records authority content, created for accessibility purposes


The Organ and Tissue Authority and the National Archives of Australia have developed this Records Authority to set out the requirements for keeping or destroying records for the core business of Program Delivery. It represents a significant commitment on behalf of the Organ and Tissue Authority to understand, create and manage the records of its activities.

This Authority is based on the identification and analysis of the business of the Organ and Tissue Authority. It takes into account the agency's legal and organisational records management requirements, and the interests of stakeholders, the agency and the National Archives of Australia.

The Authority sets out those records that need to be retained as national archives and specifies the minimum length of time that temporary records need to be kept. This Authority gives the Organ and Tissue Authority permission under the Archives Act 1983, for the destruction of the temporary records described after the minimum retention period has expired. Retention periods for these temporary records are based on: an assessment of business needs; broader organisational accountability requirements; and community expectations, and are approved by the National Archives of Australia on the basis of information provided by the agency.

As changes in circumstances may affect future records management requirements, the periodic review of this Authority is recommended. All amendments must be approved by the National Archives.

Application of this Authority

  1. This Authority is to be used to determine how long records must be kept. Records are matched to the relevant core business and records class in the Authority.
    • Where the minimum retention period has expired and the records are not needed for agency business they should be destroyed as authorised in this Authority.
    • Records that have not reached the minimum retention period must be kept until they do. 
    • Records that are identified as Retain as National Archives (RNA) are to be transferred to the National Archives of Australia for preservation.
  2. This Authority should be used in conjunction with general records authorities such as:
    • the Administrative Functions Disposal Authority (AFDA)  and/or AFDA Express issued by the National Archives to cover business processes and records common to Australian Government agencies;
    • General Records Authority (31) For source (including original) records that have been copied, converted or migrated.
  3. The Normal Administrative Practice (NAP) provision of the Archives Act 1983 gives agencies permission to destroy certain records without formal authorisation. This usually occurs where records are duplicated, facilitative or for short-term use only.  NAP does not replace arrangements agreed to in this Authority but can be used as a tool to assist in identifying records for destruction together with an agency's Records Authority or Authorities, and with AFDA and AFDA Express. The National Archives recommends that agencies develop and implement a Normal Administrative Practice policy. Advice and guidance on destroying records as a normal administrative practice and on how to develop an agency NAP policy is available from the National Archives' website at
  4. Records that are reasonably likely to be needed as evidence in a current or future judicial proceeding or are subject to a request for access under the Archives Act 1983, the Freedom of Information Act 1982 or any other relevant Act must not be destroyed until the action has been completed. 
  5. Records subject to a disposal freeze must not be destroyed until the freeze has been lifted. Further information about disposal freezes and whether they affect the application of this Authority is available from the National Archives website at
  6. Where the method of recording information changes (for example from a manual system to an electronic system, or when information is migrated from one system to a new system) this authority can still be applied, providing the records document the same core business. The information must be accessible for the period of time prescribed in this Authority. The Organ and Tissue Authority will need to maintain continuing access to the information, including digital information, for the periods prescribed in this records authority or until the information is transferred into the custody of the National Archives.
  7. In general, retention requirements indicate a minimum period for retention. The Organ and Tissue Authority may extend minimum retention periods if it considers that there is an administrative need to do so, without further reference to the National Archives. Where the Organ and Tissue Authority believes that its accountability will be substantially compromised because a retention period or periods are not adequate, it should contact the National Archives for review of the retention period.
  8. Records coming within ‘Retain as national archives’ classes in this Authority have been determined to be part of the archival resources of the Commonwealth under section 3C of the Archives Act 1983. The determination of Commonwealth records as archival resources of the Commonwealth obliges agencies to transfer the records to the National Archives when they cease to be current and, in any event, within 15 years of the records coming into existence, under section 27 of the Archives Act 1983.
  9. Records in the care of agencies should be appropriately stored, managed and preserved. Agencies need to meet this obligation to ensure that the records remain authentic and accessible over time. Under Section 31 of the Archives Act 1983, access arrangements are required for records that become available for public access including those records that remain in agency custody.
  10. Appropriate arrangements should be made with the National Archives when records are to be transferred into custody. The National Archives accepts for transfer only those records designated as national archives.
  11. Advice on how to use this Authority is available from the Organ and Tissue Authority records manager. If there are problems with the application of the Authority that cannot be resolved, please contact the National Archives.

Contact information

For assistance with this authority or for advice on other recordkeeping matters, please contact National Archives' Agency Service Centre.

Queen Victoria Terrace
Parkes ACT 2600

PO Box 7425
Canberra Mail Centre ACT 2610



Person to whom notice of authorisation is given:

Ms Yael Cass
Chief Executive Officer
Organ and Tissue Authority
Level 6, 221 London Circuit
Canberra ACT 2600


Authorises arrangements for the disposal of records in accordance with Section 24(2)(b) of the Archives Act 1983

Determines records classed as 'Retain as national archives' in this Records Authority to be part of the archival resources of the Commonwealth under section 3C of the Archives Act 1983.


All core business records relating to Program Delivery.

This authority gives permission for the destruction, retention or transfer to the National Archives of Australia of the records described. This authority will apply only with the consent of the agency currently responsible for the business documented in the records described.

Authorised by:

Signature of David Fricker, Director-General, National Archives of Australia, dated 9 May 2012

David Fricker
National Archives of Australia


Program Delivery

The core business of implementing a world’s best-practice approach to organ and tissue donation for transplantation. This is achieved by establishing a nationally coordinated approach to organ and tissue donation processes by increasing the capability and capacity within each state and territory health system to maximise donation rates and by raising community awareness and stakeholder engagement across Australia to promote organ and tissue donation.

The core tasks associated with program delivery include:

  • administering a national organ and tissue donation network, currently known as the DonateLife Network;
  • developing a national eye and tissue donation and transplantation network as part of the broader organ and tissue donation network;
  • developing, implementing, reporting and reviewing high level strategies, plans, and programs;
  • giving or receiving advice;
  • establishing and managing agreements;
  • administering funding agreements/grants;
  • developing community education and awareness programs;
  • developing  and reviewing clinical protocols, policies, standards and guidelines;
  • developing and evaluating professional training and induction programs for external delivery
  • conducting/administering research into organ and tissue donation;
  • high level reviews of the organ and tissue donation sector;
  • collecting a national set of electronic confidential organ and tissue donor data; and
  • managing and participating in internal and external meetings and committees.

For the production and dissemination of published documents such as protocols, policies, standards, guidelines, and reports, use AFDA/AFDA Express PUBLICATION.

For the establishment and administration of the Authority’s Advisory Council and its committees; such as the Principal Committee, use the ADVISORY BODIES General Records Authority 26.

For the employment of Authority staff, use AFDA/AFDA Express – PERSONNEL.

Class no Description of records Disposal action

The following significant records documenting:

  • agreements and memoranda of understanding to participate in new or innovative organ donation and transplantation initiatives;
  • the provision of significant program grants that are of widespread public or media interest;
  • high level advice relating to significant national organ and tissue donation network matters, that have far-reaching implications, or which are controversial, innovative or high profile;
  • final versions of clinical protocols, standards, charters and policies;
  • master set of professional training and induction program material for delivery to external professionals;
  • master set of community education and awareness program material;
  • final research reports;
  • high level reviews including final reports on the organ and tissue donation sector;
  •  development, implementation and review of high level strategies, plans and programs;
  • final versions of high level reports on programs and strategies;
  • national organ and tissue donor datasets;
  • master set of agency publications produced to support program delivery; and
  • high level external and internal committees relating to program delivery where the agency provides secretariat support, is the Australian Government's main representative or plays a prominent or central role. Includes establishment records, agenda, final version of minutes, reports and briefing notes and tabled papers.
Retain as national archives

Records documenting:

  • venue and catering bookings, notices, attendance lists; and
  • training course or program scheduling material, including timetables.
Destroy 3 years after action completed

Records documenting:

  • routine operational administrative tasks supporting the core business; and
  • program delivery activities, other than those covered in classes 61035 and 61036.
Destroy 7 years after action completed
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