Thursday, January 26, 2017

This Has To Be Just A Trifle More Ominous Than It Appears At First. Hasten Slowly Please!

This appeared last week:

Govt proposing automation for health dept

The Australian Government is proposing to extend the use of automation based on big data, to the health department, even though its efforts to do the same with Centrelink have not exactly been a success.
An amendment proposed to the National Health Act of 1953 would, "enable the minister, the secretary or the Chief Executive Medicare to arrange for the use of computer programs to make decisions and determinations, exercise powers or comply with obligations and do anything else related to those actions".
It would also "enable approved pharmacists whose premises have been affected by disaster or exceptional circumstances to supply pharmaceutical benefits at alternative premises in the same locality for a limited period and be paid for claims at the full rate; and ensure that entitlements for concessional beneficiaries and their dependants will apply for pharmaceutical benefits until midnight on the day of a person’s death".
The bill has completed a second reading in Parliament and would, presumably, be taken up for processing once sittings resume next month.

The Australian Privacy Foundation described the proposal as "The public service moving in the direction of robot-government, abandoning human-managed business
processes in favour of supposedly Artificial Intelligent systems."
Lots more here:
With the recent debacle from Human Services and their robo-letters the last thing we need is application of this technology without maximum oversight and review in the health sector.
Hasten slowly needs to be the watchword here!
Happy Australia Day too!
David.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Really? This is the way bureaucrats and politicians get their names into the history books for contributing to their government's demise."

This is in the context of the Centrelink debacle but it could equally well apply to Health:

Automated Centrelink a fast-track to Turnbull's Demise
http://www.smh.com.au/comment/automated-centrelink-a-fast-track-to-turnbulls-demise-20170123-gtxdyi.html