Tuesday, February 21, 2017

It Looks Like The ADHA Is Reverting To Its NEHTA Heritage And We Are Winding Up The Endless (Largely Unused?) Specifications Again!

The ADHA published this last week.

Clinical Informatics Unit Announcement: Participation Data Specification Release

Created on Wednesday, 15 February 2017
The Clinical Informatics unit is pleased to announce the latest release of the Australian Digital Health Agency's Participation Data Specification (v3.3).
You can download the full release file bundle from the following location on the Agency website:
The accompanying release note outlines changes in the Participation Data Specification and the triggers for the changes.
Feedback
Development by the Clinical Informatics unit relies on the input and cooperation of the Australian healthcare community. We value your feedback and encourage questions, comments, or suggestions about our products. Please email help@digitalhealth.gov.au or call 1300 901 001.
Thank you for your continued support.
Here is the link.
Not being very bright I wondered just what a Participation Data Specification was.
I logged on and found this:

Participation Data Specification - Participation Data Specification v3.3

The Participation Data Specification is a foundation document for the suite of data specifications that the Agency is developing for the Australian health informatics community across a range of health topics. These specifications are generally agreed to be of high priority to standardise in order to achieve the benefits of semantic interoperability in the Australian healthcare setting.
Participations are a fundamental concept within the Agency's information model and are used extensively in Agency-structured document templates and data specifications. Participations record context-specific information about relationships between participants and healthcare events. As such, participations are only meaningful within the context in which they are used; in other words, participation is not a stand-alone concept.
Here is the link:
The last version of the specification (Version 3.2) was released 20 Jul 2011.
The changes in this new release are stated to be:
“Version 3.3 30 Jan 2017
1. Statements implying that government-issued identifiers, especially Medicare Card Numbers, can be used as identifiers have been removed to avoid potential conflict with Australian Privacy Principle 9.
This version of the specification has been rebranded to the Australian Digital Health Agency”
The document is almost 200 pages long, has been under development for many yeaqrs, and to be honest I have no idea why this document exists. If it has been basically unchanged for six years, and no one seems to have noticed the issue of non-authorised use of Government identifiers (which has been around for years AFAIK and is actually illegal I believe) it does not seem to be heavily used.
The document lacks any explanation of just why it exists I can find, who is using it and what it is for that I can make sense of so I am hoping someone can explain to me just what this is all about and how it is adding value to the health system.

Before you respond I do understand the need for data standards but much of what is covered seems to be how to express names, addresses, occupations etc for which surely we already have standards? If not, one has to wonder why not. There does not seem to be much health specific in all this except maybe date of death details.

I should also point out that talk of semantic interoperation has been discussed for years but thus far it has seemed the best we can do falls far short. 
Yours in anticipation of explanations of where this document fits, who is using it and what value it is adding!
David.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

David nothing has changed, nothing changes and nothing will. The evidence speaks for itself. They do things that way because that's the way they have always done things; and always will because they know of no other way. Leopards do not chnage their spots.

Anonymous said...

Re: 9.30 they will diligently follow the process and process and procedures manual and I very much doubt that the HISA Representatives on the ADHA Advisory Board Committees being David Hansen (HISA Board Chair), Dean Martin, Clair Sullivan, Johanna Westbrook, Nick Buckmaster, Chris Pearce, Stephen Moo and Zoran Bolevich will be able to make any changes - they will have to toe the line. They are there to give credibility to what the ADHA whatever the ADHA does.

Let's face it - being on a Committee means these people have a very serious responsibility.

They must ensure their voices are heard. They must ensure they are not massaged in to the blancmange of ineptitude, inertia and political expediency, along with other members of their Committees, and used as scapegoats by the ADHA under the camoflague of "the Committee, Chaired by an ADHA Board Member, has recommended to the Board blah, blah" if that is clearly inappropriate advice.

Each of these HISA individuals is only one voice. Do they have the courage of their convictions and the ability to effect change. I predict the answer will be no.

With the current situation prevailing around the $2 billion My Health Record imbroglio committees such as these are appointed to dilute and devolve responsibility and dull down dissent.

Should that become evident the HISA Representatives will need to make themselves heard loud and clear, far and wide, and if necessary resign. They have accepted a serious responsibility. Let us hope they are up to it.

Anonymous said...

Maybe this should be included in the strategy https://thatladydoctor.com/2017/02/02/what-i-do-for-thirty-seven-dollars-and-five-cents/

It stead of casting us as backwater tech users holding healthcare back and placing an ever increasing burden on the health budget as I feel we are all to often portrayed.