Monday, April 04, 2016

Weekly Australian Health IT Links – 4th April, 2016.

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

It has been a pretty amazing week with all sorts of things happening behind the scenes. Expect some interesting stuff to come out in the next few weeks.
Note today is April 4 - the day those sucked into the myHR opt-out experiments can indeed choose to opt out. This is something I strongly advise at this point!
  • Apr 2 2016 at 12:15 AM

'One size fits all' a recipe for ill health in endless medical records quest

How's this for a truly awful example of everything that's wrong with the health system:
Patient A is a 57-year-old customer of health insurer nib. She had 19 hospital admissions over a two-year period, costing nib in excess of $85,000, "due to her multiple chronic ailments, lack of care co-ordination of her healthcare needs and siloed communication across primary care, hospitals and specialists involved in her care," according to the insurer.
Mrs A, who had a history of pulmonary hypertension, diabetes, chronic back pain and numerous other chronic diseases, is the archetype of the high-care patient at the centre of the Turnbull government's big new plans for primary health care in this country.
Only on Thursday Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Health Minister Sussan Ley said care for the chronically ill will be overhauled under a new system of Health Care Homes, in which electronic records will be a key component.

GP continue to shun MyHealth Record scheme

Paul Smith | 30 March, 2016 | 
Only 380 GPs appear to be actively using the billion-dollar MyHealth Record despite its recent Federal Government “reboot”.
According to Department of Health figures, 378 “providers” updated or uploaded a shared health summary (SHS) to the system in February.
Only 60 providers in Queensland posted the summaries — meant to be MyHealth Record’s information backbone — during the month.

My Health Records (Information Commissioner Enforcement Powers) Guidelines 2016

The My Health Records Act 2012 (My Health Records Act) establishes the My Health Record system. The My Health Record system contains online summaries of individual’s health information which can be viewed by their registered treating healthcare providers, including doctors, nurses and pharmacists across Australia.
The Australian Information Commissioner (the Information Commissioner) has various enforcement and investigative powers in respect of the My Health Record system, under both the My Health Records Act and the Privacy Act 1988 (Privacy Act).
Section 111 of the My Health Records Act provides for the Information Commissioner to make enforcement guidelines outlining how he or she will approach enforcement issues under the My Health Records Act and the Privacy Act. The Information Commissioner must then have regard to these guidelines in exercising his or her investigative and enforcement powers in relation to the My Health Record system. The purpose of these guidelines is to promote transparency in the Information Commissioner’s processes, given the Information Commissioner’s important role in relation to the My Health Record system.

Primary Health Care sells Medical Director to Affinity Equity Partners

Date March 29, 2016 - 10:49AM
Primary Health Care is selling its Medical Director business to Affinity Equity Partners for $155 million as part of the group's strategic review.
"The successful sale of Medical Director, at an attractive multiple, delivers on one of the key capital recycling initiatives from the strategic review," managing director Peter Gregg said in a statement on Tuesday.
"Through the progressive execution of these initiatives, we are creating the flexibility to strengthen our balance sheet and to fund future growth from the existing capital base," he said.

Primary sells Medical Director for $155m

  • Business Spectator
  • March 29, 2016 9:36AM

Elizabeth Redman

Primary Health Care has agreed to sell its Medical Director software business for $155 million to funds advised by private equity giant Affinity Equity Partners.
Primary (PRY) says proceeds from this sale and from the sale of its Barangaroo property will reduce its net debt to about $900m.
The sale, first revealed by DataRoom last week, follows a major strategic review by Primary.

Medical Director software is changing hands

29 March 2016
PRIMARY Health Care is selling its Medical Director software to a private equity firm for $155 million.
The sale to Affinity Equity Partners was announced in a statement to the stock exchange on Tuesday and is expected to be finalised by the end of the financial year.
Primary's managing director, Peter Gregg, says the company will continue to use Medical Director in its chain of clinics.

My Health Record outage

The My Health Record system is scheduled to be upgraded from 7:00am to 5:30pm on Saturday 2nd April 2016 (AEDT).   The My Health Record system will available as read-only during this time.
Your record can still be accessed and viewed, however you and your healthcare providers will not be able to add new information on your record, update an existing record or remove information from your record during this time.
Linking a myGov account and creating a new record in the My Health Record system is not possible during read-only.
Any change to these times will be published on the My Health Record Service availability page.

Allscripts has its eye on all states' EMRs

Healthcare software vendor Allscripts sees its involvement in a $420 million project in South Australia as a beachhead to the rest of the country.
Allscripts' 2011 contract to provide an electronic medical record (EMR) across all South Australian hospitals - a total of 74 sites - is "one of the biggest projects" in the southern hemisphere, Allscripts APAC managing director David Chambers told iTWire.
The ongoing rollout will see the software in use at the new Royal Adelaide Hospital when it opens later this year.
The state-wide project in South Australia is "an opportunity to press forward on the other states," he said.

The value of a wearable is in the data it collects

Consumers bought fitness bands and smartwatches in droves, but many of those devices have ended up in sock drawers due to a broken user experience.
Wearables are starting to evolve past smartwatches into shirts, pants, tattoos, hats, glasses, shoes, sporting goods, and more, as sensor technology improves to eliminate the need for wrist worn devices. The value of wearable technology is not in the hardware – which should be unobtrusive and almost automatic - but in the data that is collected from the devices. Consumers are experiencing trouble trying to make sense of it all.
According to Argus Insights a new report on Wearables shows the disconnect between the user experience, expectation of usefulness, and the app. For example, Jawbone Up is leading ‘delight’ as a great ‘all in one app,’ but at the same time users express discontent with the Jawbone bands.

Why you might want to become a Jedi Knight for this year’s Census

In the week before Christmas last year, the Australian Bureau of Statistics quietly trashed your privacy. We have only a few months to claim it back.
In December 2015, the ABS announced its plans to collect and keep the name and address of every person in Australia, starting with the August 2016 census. And to then use your name and address, to link your census answers to other sets of data, like health and educational records, so that the ABS can develop “a richer and dynamic statistical picture of Australia through the combination of Census data with other survey and administrative data”.
That’s right – census data could be linked to health records too. So that the ABS can do things like “(understand) and support … people who require mental health services”.

Samsung Australia Introduces brainBAND to Help Tackle Concussion Head on

Australia on March 23, 2016
Samsung Electronics Australia has announced the creation of brainBAND, an innovative piece of wearable technology designed to facilitate research into concussion in sports. brainBAND is the work of Dr. Alan Pearce and Braden Wilson.
The prototype has been developed through Samsung’s Launching People program, an initiative that brings together two experts from different backgrounds to demonstrate how technology can investigate and help solve real challenges facing society.
Dr. Alan Pearce, a neuroscientist heavily involved in concussion research and education, and Braden Wilson, an industrial designer, worked with Samsung on the program. Together, they created a wearable technology prototype that can track impacts to the head in contact sports in real-time, with the aim to use this data to better understand concussion in sport and the ongoing impact on the brain.

GP desktops to display drug compliance info from patient's app

Jo Hartley | 30 March, 2016 | 
Poor medication compliance among chronic disease patients has always been an issue. It’s a difficult problem, but the team at MedAdvisor believes it has come up with a solution.
The patient-held app already provides patients with a real-time view of their medication use, as well as updates and reminders from their connected pharmacy on refills and repeat scripts.
However, it’s being developed to include GPs.
The proposed new function, called ‘GP Link’, will integrate individual patient’s drug information from their app to the surgery’s practice software system, which can then be displayed on screen during a consult.

Orion Health secures contract with U.S. heathcare insurer

Dual listed Australian and New Zealand heathcare solutions provider, Orion Health (NZX/ASX:OHE) has signed an agreement with a major US healthcare insurer to deliver its Amadeus precision medicine platform for the insurer’s membership base.
The project will commence in April and Orion Health CEO Ian McCrae says the Amadeus platform will give the insurer’s provider partners access to longitudinal patient records that include information from across all venues of care the member has been seen at.

It will be deployed via the SaaS (Software as a Service) model and will incorporate the unnamed insurer’s entire membership, which is over 3 million members.

Qld Health offers suppliers spot on exclusive e-health panel

Asks for help in big transformation drive.

By Allie Coyne
Mar 30 2016 6:15AM
Queensland Health is asking its IT suppliers to bid for a spot on a limited new panel that will help it move ahead with a mammoth e-health drive.
In the past two years the state government has committed to transforming its procurement in order to make it easier for industry to do business with agencies.
At the same time it has embarked on a significant e-health push, last year bundling the strategic and operational IT functions of its Health department into a new division dubbed eHealth Queensland.
  • Mar 31 2016 at 12:00 AM
  • Updated Mar 31 2016 at 1:29 AM

Hedge fund traders switch to Silicon Valley to detect heart disease

Heart disease is the world's biggest killer.
A hedge fund trading desk seems an unlikely starting point for a medical technology breakthrough to detect heart disease.
Yet with the help of Australian-founded data scientist start-up Kaggle, American quantitative traders Tencia Lee and Qi Liu have designed a world-first algorithm to analyse heart scans.
The revolutionary machine appears to match the accuracy of highly trained cardiologists.

Kaggle competition winner diagnoses heart failure from MRIs

  • The Australian
  • March 31, 2016 12:00AM

Damon Kitney

Artificial intelligence could be used by doctors to diagnose heart failure following a breakthrough trial hosted by Silicon Valley crowdsourcing company Kaggle, the American National Institute of Health and consulting giant Booz Allen Hamilton.
Kaggle, which was founded in Melbourne by Anthony Goldbloom and relocated to San Francisco five years ago, uses the internet and social media to operate data analysis competitions for tens of thousands of scientists worldwide to solve problems.
It recently hosted a competition to develop algorithms that could diagnose heart failure from MRI scans.
The winning ­algorithm managed to diagnose the disease in the same way as human cardiologists, for the first time offering the ­potential to slash the time and cost of diagnosis.

Siloed approach to IT causing inefficiency, higher costs for healthcare providers

March 29, 2016
Much of today’s modern healthcare system relies on large, complex organisations that have grown and expanded their capabilities over time. Comprising a wide range of departments with deep skills and expertise, they provide professional care to large numbers of patients every day.
To support the evolution of these organisations, the IT systems and infrastructures that underpin day-to-day activity have also needed to grow. Departmental capabilities have been added as new requirements emerged with different departments procuring systems to meet their particular needs.
As a result, a large number of major healthcare providers are now faced with what have become very ‘siloed’ IT infrastructures. A range of different systems are in place that serve different areas of the organisation.

New #FHIR Vital Signs Profile

Posted on March 31, 2016 by Grahame Grieve
Over on the official FHR product blog, I just announced a new release. I wanted to expand on one of the features in the new version here
A new profile to describe vital signs (note: this is proposed as mandatory to enable better data sharing)
One of the emerging themes in many countries is sharing data with patients. And one of the broad set of things called ‘health data’ that is easiest to share is what is loosely called ‘vital signs’. It’s simple data, it’s easy to share with the patients, and we’re starting to see monitoring devices available in mainstream consumer technology. But it’s more than just patients that care – vital signs data is widely shared through the healthcare provision system, and there’s lots of interesting decision support and surveillance that can usefully be done with them.

NEHTA releases the NASH Organisation Certificate Tracker

Created on Friday, 01 April 2016
The NASH Organisation Certificate Tracker (Certificate Tracker) helps healthcare provider organisations ensure ongoing connectivity to the My Health Record system.
The Certificate Tracker identifies the expiration dates of NASH organisation certificates for healthcare provider organisations (NASH certificates). These currently need to be renewed every two years.
Healthcare provider organisations require an up-to-date NASH certificate to:
  • Access the My Health Record system
  • Register individuals for a My Health Record; and
  • Send and receive clinical information via Secure Message Delivery services.

14 ASX Stocks on the Road in the New York Spotlight

By Bob Kohut | 29.03.2016
For the past few years the ASX has partnered with international analysts registered to trade on the ASX to offer Spotlight Conferences around the world.  The Spotlight Conference provides company CEO’s and/or CFO’s the opportunity to pitch the growth potential of their companies to institutional and high net worth investors.  Conferences have been held in Singapore, Hong Kong, London, and New York.
Although there are “fat cat” investors all over the world, New York is the place to go for exposure to arguably the fattest cats of all.  When big US investors take a stake in a company, analysts take notice.

Windows boot-ups disrupted by new encrypting ransomware

Petya modifies hard drive master boot records.

By Juha Saarinen
Mar 29 2016 6:29AM
A new strain of ransomware has taken the holding of user files hostage to the extreme by preventing computers from booting up the Windows operating system, according to security vendor Trend Micro.
Dubbed Petya, the malware crashes computers and reboots them after rewriting the hard disk master boot record.
Upon reboot, the Petya malware masquerades as the Windows CHKDSK file system consistency checking tool and encrypts the entire hard drive. 

What happens when your robot gets ambitious?

Date April 2, 2016 - 8:30PM

John Elder

Robots are increasingly moving into the workplace. But what happens if they want to form a union or develop a career path?
Microsoft's Tay AI teenage girl chat-bot scandal is but a glimpse of what's in store as robots and people become increasingly involved in each other's lives.
After all, Tay, produced as an ambassador of technological and cultural cuteness, obviously wasn't programmed to be a potty-mouthed, nympho-racist with murderous enthusiasms. She adopted them via her mingling with mischievous human beings.  
So what's going to happen as robots increasingly clock in at the workplace? Will they start demanding rest breaks – not for a cup of tea and sandwich perhaps, but to read up on French poetry, take a stroll around the grounds or mix it up with their human co-workers with some table tennis? By making these demands, they are essentially claiming rights. Do they have any?  

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