Tonight the 7.30 Report ran a long piece on e-Health, EHR Privacy, the IHI, the lack of consumer involvement in the planning process (which was justified by Ms Roxon saying citizens would not understand all this technical stuff so there is no need to ask them!) and so on.
I am sure all this will be up later tonight or early tomorrow at:
There will be vision downloads and transcripts as usual.
Enjoy.. and note just how condescending our Health Minister is of the ordinary public. She could single-handedly set e-Health back a year or so with such stupid comments.
The transcript is here:
Here is the last bit of the discussion with the Health Minister and others (note bits in italics):
MARY GEARIN: According to the Health Minister, the new health-care identifier may be accessed by a smart card or pin, but won't have health information directly stored against it. The number is meant to simply serve as a link for authorised users.
NICOLA ROXON: People have a very high acceptance of the use of a Medicare number. This will obviously be different to that, and not using the Medicare number. But I think when it comes to health, people have a very good understanding of why you want to keep comprehensive records and why that ultimately helps you as an individual.
DAVID VAILE: As a database developer, I know that if you get the single number you can use that to tie everything together. And so even if they are distributed around the planet, you know, in 100 different systems, if you have got one number, it become almost impossible to properly control the use and access and reuse, the distribution, the transmission around the world of that information.
NICOLA ROXON: Sometimes I think we jump a little bit too much at shadows, that this is a way to improve patient care, save a lot of time for the patients and health professionals, and reduce a lot of wasted expenditure for extra tests and repeat tests that don't need to be done.
MARY GEARIN: In a submission on the issue two months ago, the office of the privacy commissioner noted that enabling such easy and accurate linking of data could create an environment in which linking might be done excessively and sometimes without adequate justification. The office called for greater certainty around the secondary uses of the information.
Will it be illegal for instance, employers or life insurance companies to have access to this material?
NICOLA ROXON: Again, I think these are really quite ridiculous questions when we are talking about patient-controlled information of your personal health records. Putting that into an electronic form doesn't change the law related to every other situation.
DR MUKESH HAIKERWA: The issue of secondary use of data is not covered by these provisions at this point in time. But any use of data that will be gleaned from this has to be with the patient's agreement.
MARY GEARIN: It's planned that whoever accesses the records will leave electronic fingerprints, but the minister admits many details, such as how potentially sensitive information is stored is yet to be thrashed out.
Juanita Fernando is frustrated by a process that has seen only invited advocacy groups including hers involved in the development of the system.
JUANITA FERNANDO: We need to hear a consumer voice - and there's no consumer voice.
NICOLA ROXON: I think trying to have the public intimately involved with every piece of technical advice that we are getting on how the different pharmacy information and GP information, hospital information will link up is probably beyond the interests of most people. So I don't think that sort of discussion has to be had publicly.
DAVID VAILE: They have not taken people into their confidence and they haven't put solving the privacy risks for real people in a way that is persuasive and reliable, they haven't put that at the heart of the process when it should have been.
DR MUKESH HAIKERWA: The paramount building block is confidentiality, if you don't have that people won't square up with you and you don't get the full information.
MARY GEARIN: For Jim Morgan, e-health and its promises of efficiency can't come fast enough.
JIM MORGAN: Yes I'd prefer others didn't get access to it, but what on earth are they going to do with it anyway?
---- End Transcript
Ms Roxon clearly thinks no one has the right to ask questions they see as important