Friday, December 10, 2010

MyHospitals Web Site Launches - It Has A Fair Way To Go I Reckon!

The following opened for business at 11am.

Go here to check it out.

http://www.myhospitals.gov.au/

Here is an early report from the SMH.

MyHospitals website goes live

Mark Metherell

December 10, 2010 - 11:56AM

Australians will now be able to check how their hospital waiting times compare nationally after the MyHospitals website went live this morning.

Information on waiting times for emergency care and elective surgery for each of the 769 public hospitals will be available. Information will also be available on 153 private hospitals.

The details are already available on most state health websites, including those in NSW and Victoria.

But the additional feature on the new website will be information on how the hospitals' performances compare with national benchmarks.

The website does not yet include details on how hospitals perform on significant quality measures such as the rate of infections caught in hospitals and unexpected readmissions - indicating poor performance.

The director of the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, Penny Allbon, said such information would be made available after technical issues were resolved and health ministers gave their approval.

More here:

http://www.smh.com.au/national/myhospitals-website-goes-live-20101210-18rxo.html

There is also a good interview (with transcript) with Andrew Pesce of the AMA on the topic here:

http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2010/s3090203.htm

There are 2 major gaps in my view - excluding the obvious financial comparisons which I am sure will be a very long time coming! First there is very limited quality and safety data as I predicted when this was first announced. I know getting comparability is hard but that is where the real value will lie.

See here:

http://aushealthit.blogspot.com/2010/08/and-just-where-will-reliable.html

(there are lots of suggestions here).

Second Ms Roxon is refusing to have things like staffing levels reported - despite the obvious linkages between staff levels and patient safety (especially in nursing).

We all need to be clear - the real objective of this web-site should be to push hospital managers to do better for patients. With that mindset the gaps that need filling are obvious. About 3/10 so far!

David.

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