Monday, July 07, 2014

Weekly Australian Health IT Links – 7th July, 2014.

Here are a few I have come across the last week or so.
Note: Each link is followed by a title and a few paragraphs. For the full article click on the link above title of the article. Note also that full access to some links may require site registration or subscription payment.

General Comment

Again a pretty quiet week and for another week we have no response from the Government regarding the PCEHR Review. I wonder what the hold up is?
This must soon be moving from slowness to straightforward incompetence.
The second last entry I find fascinating with Australia having been internet connected for 25 years!

Hambleton takes over as NeHTA chair

High profile corporate and education leader David Gonski has stepped down from his role as the chairman of the National eHealth Transition Authority (NeHTA) and will be replaced by the immediate past president of the Australian Medical Association (AMA), Dr Steve Hambleton.
The changing of the guard comes as the cross-government body tasked with making a national electronic health and medical records scheme a functional reality faces a pivotal year after its funding was extended for just one year in the federal Budget.
The departure of Mr Gonski was widely anticipated as he is ineligible to serve a third term as chairman under NeHTA’s constitution.
Mr Gonski, whose name has since become synonymous with the ambitious education reforms of the former Labor Federal government, became the NeHTA’s chairman in 2008 and is widely credited with keeping the massive and frequently challenged project alive through his quiet but formidable style of diplomacy.

Hambleton explains his e-health vision

3 July, 2014 Clifford Fram
Former AMA president Steve Hambleton has seen the future.
It’s a seamless computer system that keeps Australian doctors and hospitals up to date about all their patients’ test results and all the medicines they are taking, in real-time with little effort on their part.
“We will get the ability to minimise unwarranted clinical variations. We will be able to securely share information with and about our patients,” says Dr Hambleton, who has accepted an appointment to replace David Gonski as chair of the ­National E-Health Transition Authority.

Hambleton gains industry’s approval

THE appointment of Steve Hambleton as chairman of the ­National E-Health Transition Authority has been welcomed by the industry, which hopes for an overhaul of the agency that delivered the troubled $1 billion personally controlled e-health records system.
Dr Hambleton, immediate past president of the Australian Medical Association, replaces David Gonski, who completed the maximum two terms, or six years, as NEHTA chair.
Dr Hambleton was a panel member on the government review into the PCEHR.
The Consumers e-Health Alliance said it was interesting to contemplate the role Dr Hambleton needed to play as incoming chair of NEHTA.

Dr Hambleton appointed Chair of NEHTA

The National E-Health Transition Authority (NEHTA) CEO Peter Fleming announced last week that Dr Steve Hambleton, AMA immediate past President has been appointed the new Chair of NEHTA.

A healthy new record system is born at Mater

Jennifer Foreshew

Technology Reporter
MATER Health Services had a web-based platform for managing and co-ordinating student clinical placements but needed to add reporting functionality.
The organisation, based in Brisbane, manages more than 2600 undergraduate students across its own nursing program and through medical, allied health and midwifery placements from partnered universities.
The Catholic organisation runs seven hospitals, a medical research institute, three health centres and pathology and pharmacy businesses.
Mater has more than 7500 staff and volunteers providing care for more than 500,000 ­patients each year.

Doctors not sharing their iPads

3 July, 2014 Michael Woodhead
Doctors like using iPads when interacting with patients, but only for their own benefit in looking up information and not for sharing with patients, it seems.
When senior doctors at a Sydney teaching hospital were given iPads to use on ward rounds, they found them useful for accessing test results and medication charts — but wouldn't give the patients a look-in.
Despite being given the iPads to enable them to more easily share clinical information with patients, the 10 doctors followed in a Sydney study said they didn't have time on busy ward rounds to be passing an iPad to-and-fro and they still preferred to deliver information verbally.

Fiona Stanley IAM project has failed: WA audit

$6 million spent, fate of project to be determined
Adam Bender (Computerworld) on 30 June, 2014 15:36
An identity access management (IAM) project for the Fiona Stanley Hospital in Western Australia has failed due to poor management, according to a government audit.
“Project planning was deficient and governance and oversight including monitoring of progress was inadequate,” according to an Information Systems Audit Report released today by the WA Office of the Auditor General.
The IAM project for the new hospital was meant to provide anywhere, anytime access to IT systems and physical hospital buildings for authorised individuals.
The project commenced in 2011, but the WA Department of Health stopped development in October 2013. At the time of the decision, $6 million of a budgeted $9.2 million had been spent.

June Update

The For Providers site aims to assist medical practices to navigate their way through the complexities of eHealth; from planning, preparation, registration and set-up through to use.
Below are links to new information and resources available on the For Provider site:

Australian Medicines Terminology (AMT) v3 model release

Created on Monday, 30 June 2014
The National Clinical Terminology and Information Service (NCTIS) is pleased to announce that the first release of the Australian Medicines Terminology (AMT) in the v3 model format is now available.
The AMT v3 model has been designed to simplify the AMT v2 model to make it easier to understand and implement, and also to align with the IHTSDO SNOMED CT Release Format 2 specifications. A number of the changes made were informed by stakeholder engagement during the Model Review project.

There's an app for everything - soon even for health appointments

04 July 2014 , 8:11 AM by Jacquie Mackay
CQ Medicare Local has a  really innovative idea to make health care much much easier for patients in the future.
They are developing an app that provides information about all the health care providers in the region in an easy to access directory and not only provide information about where and when the service is available but also the ability to book yourself in for an appointment.

Technical issues plague myGov online tax return lodgement

Date July 3, 2014

Ben Grubb

The Tax Office has been hit by a technical issue which prevents people lodging tax returns and accessing other essential government services online.
The issue is related to this year's mandatory requirement for taxpayers to use a myGov login when lodging returns online. The myGov site is a portal the federal government created as a single log-in for all its services.
"We are working with myGov to fix error 5077 in etax," the Tax Office said on its website on Thursday. "We recommend waiting and trying again in a few hours, as too many attempts will lock you out. We appreciate your patience. We will post updates through our Twitter page."
The issues appeared to surface on Wednesday, when both the Tax Office and the Department of Human Service, which runs myGov, acknowledged the matter on their Facebook pages.

Smart glasses for the blind

John Ross

Higher Education Reporter
MOST glasses correct poor vis­ion but are unable to replace what the eye cannot see.
Now an Australian scientist has taken it one step further and developed glasses that do the seeing for you, offering some sight to the legally blind.
Australian neurologist Steph­en Hicks has led a project at Oxford University designing “smart” glasses, which are being trialled in public for the first time in the university town.
“About 90 per cent of people who are registered blind still have some sight, and often quite a bit,” Dr Hicks said.

Health tech company helps hospital go paperless

Saturday 05 Jul 2014 6:20p.m.
A new system is being introduced in an Auckland hospital in an attempt to cut mistakes and give doctors and nurses more time with patients.
The e-health initiative aims to make two wards paperless, and if it's successful Waitemata DHB will spread it to other services.
Born prematurely, Maria Williams depends on the high-tech world of North Shore Hospital's special care baby unit. So it's fitting that the unit will become the hub for a new technological step forward.

Final NBN inquiry report not due till next election

Date July 3, 2014

Lia Timson

Australians are unlikely to see a full parliamentary assessment of the national broadband network until the eve of the next election, with more Senate committee hearings to come before a final evaluation of the infrastructure project is delivered.
The Senate committee on the NBN was due to table its final report on June 10. The date was subsequently changed to the “last sitting day of the 44th parliament”.
The decision extends the remit of the panel, which is made up of Coalition, Labor and Green senators.

'Link is up': 25 years since Australia connected permanently to the internet

Date June 25, 2014

Mahesh Sharma

Twenty-five years ago this week, a satellite link connected Australia to the internet for the first time, thanks to the largesse of NASA.
The permanent connection, established at the University of Melbourne, afforded only a transmission speed of 56 kilobits per second, but was enough for NASA's internet expansion program, funded by the US Federal Networking Council, itself linked to the US Department of Defence.
The man at the Australian end of the line was University of Melbourne researcher Robert Elz whose work relationship with University of Hawaii academic Dr Torben Nielsen helped the connection.

The next generation: How today's technology is closing in on Star Trek

Date July 3, 2014 - 10:21AM

Vivek Wadhwa

In a distant part of the galaxy, 300 years in the future, Starship Enterprise Captain James T. Kirk talks to his crew via a communicator; has his medical officer assess medical conditions through a handheld device called a tricorder; synthesises food and physical goods using his replicator; and travels short distances via a transporter. Kirk's successors hold meetings in virtual-reality chambers, called holodecks, and operate alien spacecraft using displays mounted on their foreheads. All this takes place in the TV series Star Trek, and is, of course, science fiction.
This science fiction is, however, becoming science reality. Many of the technologies that we saw in Star Trek are beginning to materialise, and ours may be better than Starfleet's. Best of all, we won't have to wait 300 years.
Take Captain Kirk's communicator. It was surely an inspiration for the first generation of flip phones, those clunky mobile devices that we used in the 1990s. These have evolved into smartphones, far more advanced than the science-fiction communicator. Kirk's device didn't receive email, play music, surf the web, provide directions or take photos, after all. It also didn't sweet-talk him as Apple's Siri does when you ask her the right questions.

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