Quote Of The Year

Timeless Quotes - Sadly The Late Paul Shetler - "Its not Your Health Record it's a Government Record Of Your Health Information"


H. L. Mencken - "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong."

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Australian National E- Health Strategy Released.

The following has just appeared.

National Ehealth Strategy

In early 2008, Australian Health Ministers, through the Australian Health Ministers' Advisory Council, commissioned Deloitte to develop a strategic framework and plan to guide national coordination and collaboration in E-Health. As part of this process, Deloitte conducted a series of national consultations which included Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments, general practitioners, medical specialists, nursing and allied health, pathology, radiology and pharmacy sectors, health information specialists, health service managers, researchers, academics and consumers.

The National E-Health Strategy developed by Deloitte, together with key stakeholders, provides a useful guide to the further development of E-Health in Australia. It adopts an incremental and staged approach to developing E-Health capabilities to:

  • leverage what currently exists in the Australian E-Health landscape;
  • manage the underlying variation in capacity across the health sector and States and Territories; and
  • allow scope for change as lessons are learned and technology is developed further.

The Strategy reinforces the existing collaboration of Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments on the core foundations of a national E-Health system, and identifies priority areas where this can be progressively extended to support health reform in Australia. It also provides sufficient flexibility for individual States and Territories, and the public and private health sectors, to determine how they go about E-Health implementation within a common framework and set of priorities to maximise benefits and efficiencies.

A Summary of National E-Health Strategy can be accessed by clicking here (PDF 246 KB).

The page is found here:


Commentary later.




Trevor3130 said...

It's a view from the planet Uranus. It steers well away from actual $ amounts, in favour of that quaint b.s. term "leverage". It bears the heavy hand of a senior bureaucrat counting down the hours. Since it may be assumed that 'apply leverage' is another way of saying 'commit resources' then, hopefully, this mealy-mouthed statement opens a door for someone - the exit door.
From page 3 -
The relative lack of maturity of information technology within the health sector has important implications for patient safety. In a complex, multi point service delivery environment with hundreds of millions of service encounters each year, reliance on largely manual processes and information flows creates the potential for a truly significant amount of errors and inefficiencies. It is very difficult to accurately estimate the real impact of these issues because of the poor quality of Australian health system information. However, studies have found that up to 18 per cent of medical errors are due to the inadequate availability of patient information and that adverse events broadly account for as much as three per cent of total costs of care each year. This represents approximately $3 billion in avoidable annual expenditure, money that could be better spent absorbing additional health sector demands driven by an ageing and sicker population.
They do mention the privacy issues, but drew back from re-stating the findings of the ALRC inquiry. A tiny bit of courage on this point would have not stirred the waters too much.

Anonymous said...

Your commentator (Tuesday, December 09, 2008 9:22:00 AM) and Oliver Frank got it pretty right on Dec 9 when they said “There is a lot of repetition from past reports” and “They remain focused on outlining the problems, and the needs.”

The workstreams seem very similar to what NEHTA has been proposing one way or another since it was formed. The challenge is ‘the how’.

Trevor3130 said...

'Review and evaluation of Australian information about primary health care: a focus on general practice' at AIHW has a fair bit on electronic communications. Eg, page 106, Legal issues for users remain contentious—even around the software itself. For example, in the event that errors result from a design flaw in a software update, who is liable if system problems lead to an adverse event: the designer, the vendor or the user? Questions of data privacy and security have not been satisfactorily answered, and no decision has yet been made about where data would be stored, and indeed who owns them. In addition, many of the existing collections do not obtain patients’ consent to collect their information, and ethical oversight of its use is lacking.