The former Commonwealth Department of Human Services and Health provided a permanent secretariat to the AHMC from April 1984 until December 1994 when a combined Health and Community Services Ministerial Council (HCSMC) Secretariat was formed.
In 1997 a decision was taken to co-locate the HCSMC Secretariat with the chair of AHMAC, which traditionally was a two-year appointment.  At that time the Chair was based in South Australia and the Secretariat was relocated to the South Australian Department of Health.  Since then the Secretariat has remained in Adelaide hosted by the South Australian Department of Health.

A Memorandum of Understanding between the Secretariat and the host department sets out the arrangement and costs of office services provided by the department which are paid for by the Secretariat. The Secretariat operates under the host department’s Australian Business Number and GST processes for its financial transactions.

The Secretariat is responsible for:
• Organising the business of and support for CHC, AHMAC, the chairs and the AHMAC Executive Committee.
• Coordinating the provision of advice to AHMAC and the Executive Committee.
• Organising and managing meeting arrangements, processes and records of decisions.
• Monitoring and following-up actions arising from meetings.
• Monitoring and progressing reporting from committees and task specific working groups.
• Maintaining official records for CHC and AHMAC, including originals of agreements and memoranda of understanding signed by members.
• Liaising with member jurisdictions and external bodies.
• Providing support to the Secretariats of principal committees.
• Managing the AHMAC budget and financial arrangements.
• Maintaining accurate and complete records.
• Providing strategic support in establishing and monitoring work programs for the Councils.
• Developing improvements in AHMAC's practices and operating formats where need is indicated.
• Organising representation of AHMAC on subsidiary bodies and on external forums and bodies.
• Managing correspondence and other business between meetings.
• Managing out-of-session business.
• Arranging meeting communiques, advertisements and press releases for AHMAC and CHC
• Ensuring the compliance and transparency of Regulatory Impact Statements (RISs).
• Ensuring that Councils meet their responsibilities for providing data in a timely way.

The Secretariat can be contacted on 08 8226 6191.