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Thursday, February 18, 2010

NEHTA – The One Year Report Card. Is F minus a Grade?

This appeared just on a year ago.

Peter Fleming, National E-Health Transition Authority, Chief executive

A PRAGMATIC approach will lead to success in e-health projects across the country this year, Peter Fleming says.

"There are huge opportunities to leverage what's out there, but in the short term we need to be pragmatic because that varies from state to state and from platform to platform," Fleming says.

"We have a utopian view of standards, but the reality is we need to work with each vendor to understand their capabilities, and start from there."

He is confident several production pilots, presently before NEHTA's board for approval, will begin this year.

"Initially, we're looking at medication management, referrals and discharge summaries because the work we've done on identifiers, security and clinical terminology positions us well in those areas," he says.

"A discharge summary means you need to pass data from hospital systems to the GP's system. So, we'll need to get clinical input on requirements; we'll need to look at the systems that are actually in place; and we'll need to work with the vendors and software suppliers to incrementally get where we want to go.


The Council of Australian Governments is to consider this year a business case for a more substantive e-health record program.

Fleming says NEHTA hopes to publish a road map soon, but he emphasises the plan will be iterative.

"To be successful, everyone needs to understand where they fit into the equation, what they need to deliver and when," he says.

A public awareness campaign is also on the agenda.

The Stakeholder Reference Forum, set up last year, brought in consumer representatives along with peak clinical and health IT bodies.

Full Article is here:


So, at 1 year out.

1. No Business Case submitted for whatever the current name is for a shared record – a good thing in my view as we don’t want some half assed proposal dropped on us – as would be the usual NEHTA / DoHA form. I bet this is what happens!

2. No real change or improvement in secure clinical messaging.

3. No progress anyone can see on medication management – and a new specification delivered for Discharge Summaries – so not actually done yet!.

4. The Stakeholder forums meet each quarter – just how good is that and how much does anyone else hear about what went on – and if it was useful.

5. At least we now know what the spin program looks like.

6. Vendor engagement remains rudimentary at best.

We need to tell these people to fall on their swords. They are clearly clueless, can’t implement anything, and need to just melt into the background – and the sooner the better in my view.



Anonymous said...

Karen Dearne's article reads like it was written just yesterday!!!! not 12 months ago. !!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

David, there has been change in "secure clinical messaging". There is a standard close to completion with Standards Australia. There is a Connectathon happening in April. Expect vendors to support SMD later this year.

Dr David More MB, PhD, FACHI said...

Not yet there hasn't. Your comment is all about close, coming and expectations.

We will all believe it when we see it.

I have stopped believing 'futures'


Anonymous said...

David, Your posts read as if you have a personal vendetta against NEHTA. It is not that you have stopped believing, it is that you take every opportunity to make NEHTA look bad. Your spin is almost as bad as NEHTA's.

Dr David More MB, PhD, FACHI said...

Not personal, purely a policy and implementation approach difference and concern. After 20+ years in e-Health I believe there is one last chance to get some progress and I believe NEHTA's approach is profoundly flawed.

No one else seems to care that millions are probably being wasted and that we will get no improvement for years, if ever, with what they are doing.

To me NEHTA looks like an evolving train wreck. Be assured many within NEHTA, and many outside, know it, but the leadership is yet 'get it'.

If I am wrong, so be it, but right now I would suggest the evidence I am is pretty scant.


Anonymous said...

I think you are right to be concerned David, and if you want to see a manifestation of your concerns, then look no further than Victoria.

There a huge bureacracy has been built with a strategy of utilising a one size fits all approach to e-health. The strategy was devised with little meaningful input from the end users and piloting was never an option.

Millions are being spent on installing 'mature' systems that the public health sector are Mandated to use.

It has impeded innovation in e-health for some years now, and unfortunately will continue to do so for some time to come.

Anonymous said...

"David, there has been change in "secure clinical messaging". There is a standard close to completion with Standards Australia. There is a Connectathon happening in April. Expect vendors to support SMD later this year."

Well, David is right, I'll believe it when I see it. Look, standards are one thing but the vendors have to MAKE IT HAPPEN. It was only last year after an enormous amount of work that the MSIA's interoperability working group fell apart - much work, nothing achieved. Why? Because we couldn't get co-operation. Why will it be any different with "secure clinical messaging"? I'll believe it when I see it.

As for Connectathon - we keep getting this stuff served up at HIC Conferences year after year - look at the demo, see how the vendors are working together - but hey - in the real world we don't operate with canned demos designed to make us believe the magic pudding is real.