The following appeared from NEHTA today.
Patient privacy to improve under new system
19 January 2010. Confidentiality between doctor and patient will have even more safeguards in place under the new healthcare identifier system being proposed by the Federal Government, Dr Mukesh Haikerwal said today.
Dr Haikerwal, a clinical lead with the National E-health Transition Authority (NEHTA), said good clinical care depended on the absolute confidence that the privacy of each consultation is maintained.
This confidentiality is equally important to both health professionals and the people they look after and without this the system will not fly,’’ he said.
Patient confidentiality is vitally important to us in our work and the good thing about the healthcare identifier is that it not only makes the system safer, more accurate and up-to-date, but it also carries with it additional safeguards over and above what exists today.”
Dr Haikerwal, a medical practitioner and former federal president of the Australian Medical Association, said one feature of the proposed new system was that health professionals will have to be authenticated prior to accessing the system.
“There is also a very strict audit trail so that any individual can know that someone has accessed their record in the system which is an additional layer of security,” Dr Haikerwal said.
He also said that the identifiers are an essential element of any future electronic health record system, which will be patient controlled and not held on a centralised database.
Furthermore, the personal information associated with the identifier will be restricted to name, birth information, sex and address.
Dr Haikerwal said that he had personally been involved in consultations with a wide range of groups including privacy advocates over the past six months.
"You will never satisfy everyone in regard to privacy, but I have far more confidence in the future of e-health and the security of it's records than I do in the current system," he said.
"If confidentiality of the doctor-patient relationship is in anyway compromised I would have no part in it," Dr Haikerwal said.
For more information contact Alison Sweeney Media Coordinator
The release and contact details are here:
We all need to recognise this system is meant to commence in less than six months.
Just how are health providers to be properly authenticated – no information. Just why are we seeing differing messages about record content and record access.
The reason is pretty clear. Those involved do not have a clue what they are doing and more than that are not telling the public – in other than carefully spun press releases.
Mr Fleming you will be a former CEO walking out unless NEHTA dramatically transforms its communication of the details of what is planned and fully justifies the rationale of each of them!
How, in detail, will 600,000 health care providers be authenticated, how will it work, what will be the workflow impact, how will fraud be prevented and what exactly will it cost? More, why have these details not been in the public domain for a number of months so they can be considered?
Again – just hopeless! I am getting really tired of this. Where is the quality of openness and appropriateness of public administration we should be seeing?