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."

Monday, March 07, 2016

Weekly Australian Health IT Links – 7th March, 2016.

Here are a few I have come across the last week or so.
Note: Each link is followed by a title and a few paragraphs. For the full article click on the link above title of the article. Note also that full access to some links may require site registration or subscription payment.

General Comment

There was only one real news item this week. The official launch of My Health Record (the didn’t get the ability to call it myHR apparently as they failed to register it!) on Friday 4 March, 2106.
As far as I am concerned this was a day of appalling and dishonest infamy! At least the poll last week showed not many think it is a real goer and will be properly trialled!

Your personal health information is about to go online but you can stop it

March 3, 20169:07pm
Sue Dunlevy News Corp Australia Network
ONE million Australians will automatically have their personal health information uploaded onto the internet from July as the government tries to resurrect the failed $1 billion e-health record.
More than 360,000 residents of Penrith in Sydney’s west and 700,000 in North Queensland will be the first to trial the new opt-out My Health Record.
The record will contain a summary of their health status put in by their doctor, records of their medicines and allergies and eventually links to x-ray and medical test results.
Patients in these areas will have to notify the government by June if they do not wish their personal health information used in such a record.

eHealth move will improve coordinated care: PSA

The PSA has welcomed the Government’s move to encourage more Australians to use eHealth records to improve coordinated healthcare.

Federal Health Minister Sussan Ley today launched a new program for electronic health records to be trailed by more than one million Australians in Western Sydney and North Queensland.
Under the trial, patients can share health information securely online with authorised healthcare providers, including pharmacists.
My Health Record will give both patients and health professionals immediate access to all of their necessary health information online to improve co-ordinated care outcomes, reduce duplication and provide vital information in emergency situations, says the Minister.
Adelaide Thursday March 03, 2016

Coroner raises red flag on "ridiculous" e-health system

The State Coroner has raised serious concerns about the impact of the state's controversial electronic health records system on his ability to conduct inquests into hospital deaths.
Bension Siebert @Bension1
Coroner Mark Johns told InDaily he had sought assurances from the Health Department, and Health Minister Jack Snelling, that the performance of his statutory powers would not be impacted when the $422 million Enterprise Patient Administration System (EPAS) is rolled out to South Australia’s major hospitals.
“I sought an assurance and they have not provided it,” said Johns.
He said the case notes produced by EPAS after a person dies in hospital are “a sort of higgledy-piggledy computer dump”, many times larger than case notes produced using other systems.
He believes his ability to conduct inquests into hospital deaths would be made “much more difficult” if he were examining the death of a patient whose health records were produced on EPAS.

Australian national auditor to comb over myGov

Calls for public submissions.

By Paris Cowan
Mar 3 2016 11:32AM
The Australian National Audit Office has revealed it will undertake an in-depth audit into the implementation and benefits realised by the myGov service gateway.
MyGov has been progressively rolled out since early 2014, managed by the IT team at the Department of Human Services. It acts as an authentication layer providing single log-on access to a range of government transactions from tax returns to electronic health records.
It has been touted as a success by the Commonwealth, with 8.6 million registered users at last count and almost 200,000 logins every day, but its implementation has not been without controversy.

MyGov to feel the audit blowtorch

Date March 3, 2016 - 5:21PM

Noel Towell

Reporter for The Canberra Times

Frustrated users of the troubled myGov web portal now have the chance to contribute to an official review of the government web portal's performance by the Commonwealth's Audit Office.
The Australian National Audit Office wants stakeholders and members of the public to make submissions to its report which is due to be tabled in parliament in spring this year.
The giant Department of Human Services, which runs myGov, has had an unhappy recent history with ANAO audits after it was savaged in mid-2015 for its performance in answering its phones.

GPs fear aged care referrals lost in IT blackhole

Tessa Hoffman | 2 March, 2016 |
GPs fear vulnerable patients needing aged care services are falling through the cracks due to ongoing problems with a new national referral system.
The Federal Government changed the aged-care service referral pathway from a local to a central system in July last year with the launch of the My Aged Care website - through which all GP referrals for care now have to be made.
By September the government had admitted the system was cluncky to use and advised GPs to fax referrals for home care, such as wound dressing or blood pressure checks, until it could create a better web form.

Qld to sink $91m into replacement of expiring pathology system

Tenders to open soon.

By Paris Cowan
Feb 29 2016 11:46AM
The Queensland government has committed $91 million to buy a replacement laboratory information system for the state’s health department.
The state has issued a guide to vendors, providing a timeline of agencies' ICT procurement intentions over the coming 12 months.
The schedule reveals Queensland Health intends to release an approach to market for the mammoth LIS replacement between January and March this year.

The e-Health platform as a standards integration project

Posted on by wolandscat
I have argued for an open platform approach in e-Health for some years now, as have others (Ewan Davis’s Nobody Can Own the Platform post is a nice summary of the issue). It’s clear that the idea is starting to resonate in some places like the NHS, bits of ONC thinking, the VA, and in some other countries. But how can governments and other fund-holders go about realising an e-Health platform?
The main problem from the government (national or otherwise) level is the gap between the existing sea of standards and a coherent platform, which probably still seems like a Chimera beckoning from the horizon. I hear them saying: yes, well, that sounds right, but how do we achieve it?
Firstly let’s just remind ourselves what doesn’t work: standards as a shopping list, or as I call it, the bag of standards approach. This is the thinking that each area needing standardisation (terminology, EHR, clinical content, guidelines, APIs, messaging, …) can be solved by nominating a supposedly appropriate standard, and that the resulting list equals some sort of national e-health architecture that can then be given to industry.

Apple's Health app has a feature all GPs should know about

29 February 2016
When Apple launched iOS 8, it also automatically installed an app, Health, on all its devices using this operating system. After initially being affronted when an app automatically downloaded on my phone, and frustrated that I couldn’t delete it, 
I decided to check it out. I found it to have a function which I believe all GPs should know about.
Health helps you record a wide array of information. It syncs with other health and fitness apps on your phone and will record data such as steps, weight and height.

Many parents consult 'Dr Google', but few trust the information

Date March 2, 2016 - 6:40PM

Harriet Alexander

Health Reporter

If Dr Google was a real human, he would have all the gravitas of a used-car salesman: often used, but seldom trusted.
A national survey on sources of child health information has shown that while most parents used websites, online forums and blogs, very few had any faith in such sites.
Their most trusted source of information was their general practitioner, who was also the person they were most likely to consult, the Australian Child Health Poll found.

Volpara software analyses breast density to aid cancer detection in mammograms

Date March 1, 2016

Brian Robins

The effectiveness of mammograms has long been key problem in public health programs for women. Often potentially cancerous tissue is missed, resulting in cases of cancer occurring only a matter of months after a breast screening.
Volpara Health Technologies has developed software which analyses breast density, which can be a risk factor since it indicates both a higher incidence of breast cancer and can also hide cancer in a mammogram.
It is launching an initial public offering underwritten by Morgans, seeking $20 million, to help expedite its roll-out in the US, an $US8 billion ($11 billion) market. There, 24 states have legislation on the books which makes it compulsory for breast density to be tested, with another 10 states likely to follow suit, providing Volpara with a ready pathway to market.

SA Health staff snooping on patient records prompts pledge to make issue public

28 February, 2016
Health authorities will reveal quarterly on a website how many SA Health staff have been disciplined for inappropriately accessing patient records, South Australian Health Minister Jack Snelling has promised.
It is in response to revelations that 21 employees were caught snooping in recent months, 13 of them at medical records of accused killer Cy Walsh, who is charged with the murder of Phil Walsh when he was Adelaide Crows coach.
Mr Snelling said data would be published online each quarter, with the first expected to be publicised in late May.

Staff penalised for medical records breaches

Australia March 4 2016
South Australia Health Minister Jack Snelling has revealed that eight SA Health staff members have been caught inappropriately accessing medical records; two of whom have already been dismissed. Mr Snelling lent his support to SA Health for not disclosing the breaches when they occurred, stating that to do so would have breached the privacy of the patients involved.

Snooping doctors will be sacked, says SA Health

AAP | 1 March, 2016 | 
Doctors, nurses and other health staff caught snooping on patient records in the future will be sacked, says a state health authority. 
The threat comes after 13 employees of SA Health were found to have inappropriately accessed the medical records of Cy Walsh after the stabbing to death of his father last year, says the health authority.
Another six clinicians were disciplined, and two were sacked, for snooping on other patients' records over the past year.

E-health play Alcidion makes debut

Nick Evans
February 29, 2016, 7:12 am
Nathan Buzza’s latest IT venture has launched onto the Australian Securities Exchange today.
E-health provider Alcidion Group began trading with a market capitalisation of about $35 million.
Serial technology entrepreneur Mr Buzza is best known for Commtech Wireless, sold in 2008 to Amcom Software.
Alcidion Group www.alcidion.com.au/
Alcidion (ASX:ALC) formerly Naracoota Resources is a leading provider of intelligent informatics for high performance healthcare that empowers clinicians with decision support tools to ensure the highest quality of care for their patients.

Alcidion Group takes e-health technology to ASX listing

Monday, February 29, 2016 by Proactive Investors
E-health provider Alcidion Group has begun trading on the ASX
E-health provider Alcidion Group (ASX:ALC) has begun trading on the ASX boards today from the reverse takeover of the shell of Naracoota Resources, which last traded at $0.056 in December.
Alcidion has built an electronic software technology that centralises patient health data, including hospital pathology and oncology records onto mobile devices.

HealthEngine launches Australia's first Apple Watch app to find and book health appointments.

29 February, 2016
The HealthEngine Apple Watch app allows patients to search for a nearby appointment from their wrist. Once an appointment is found, the patient will then use Handoff to finalise the booking via their mobile. The app also allows the patient to manage their bookings, check-in to their appointment when arriving at the practice and even receive driving directions.
Dr Marcus Tan, HealthEngine CEO and Medical Director, said the Apple Watch app is just one of the ways HealthEngine is making healthcare more accessible for patients and improving the overall healthcare experience.
“Patients want convenience and ease. Our goal is to make finding and booking an appointment easier and more transparent.
  • Feb 29 2016 at 5:08 PM

HealthKit raises $1.6 million for expansion plans

HealthKit raised $1.6 million from investors to expand overseas and fulfil its goal of becoming the most popular software system for doctors and medical practices in Australia.
Founded by former ANZ Bank employees Alison Hardacre and Lachlan Wheeler in 2012, HealthKit provides software on the cloud that integrates patient records, invoices, diary bookings, financial reports and Medicare claims for practitioners and allows patients to easily search for doctors and specialists.
Ms Hardacre said the business was closing in on its biggest competitor, Medical Director (owned by ASX-listed company Primary Health Care), and the money would help it become larger.

Updated My Health Record website

Created on Friday, 04 March 2016
The Commonwealth Department of Health have updated https://myhealthrecord.gov.au with information about the My Health Record system (previously known as Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record).

Biological supercomputer uses the 'juice of life'

Bio-computer uses less energy, runs cooler and is more efficient
Using nanotechnology, proteins and a chemical that powers cells in everything from trees to people, researchers have built a biological supercomputer.
The supercomputer, which is the size of a book, uses much less energy, so it runs cooler and more efficiently, according to scientists at McGill University, where the lead researchers on the project work.
"We've managed to create a very complex network in a very small area," said Dan Nicolau Sr., chairman of the Department of Bioengineering at McGill. "This started as a back-of-an-envelope idea, after too much rum I think, with drawings of what looked like small worms exploring mazes."

Pathologists standardise lab test reports

1 March 2016
GPs with red-green colour blindness can expect easier-to-read lab test results under proposed changes to pathology reporting, a conference has been told.
Rather than relying on red prints, a new style will be adopted for some reports, using multiple ways of highlighting information of interest, the Royal College of Pathologists of Australasia (RCPA) annual conference has heard.
This may include red print plus an ‘H’ for high and an ‘L’ for low results, making it easier for everyone to get the most out of reports, says Dr Michael Legg, chair of the RCPA informatics committee.

Video: The problem with e-health records

Bringing healthcare into the digital world.

By Staff Writer
Mar 1 2016 12:13PM
Following lacklustre take-up of its e-health records scheme, the federal government last year introduced legislation to make the program opt-out by default to boost adoption rates.
But according to CIOs within Australia's healthcare sector, much more needs to be done to create a holistic national e-health strategy.

These are 2016's top 10 health technology hazards

2 March 2016
A NEW report from a US research institute has proposed the top 10 health technology hazards in medicine today.
The ECRI institute formulated the list based on tests, real-world observation, incident reports, literature reviews, and interviews with clinicians, engineers and others.
The aim is to help doctors and clinics prioritise their efforts to protect patient safety. In order, the hazards are:
  1. Inadequate cleaning of flexible endoscopes before disinfection
  2. Missed alarms

New Paediatric Injectable Guidelines 5th Edition now available

MedicalDirector Publishing and Knowledge have released the digital version of the Paediatric Injectable Guidelines 5th Edition.
The key feature of the 5th Edition is the introduction of Plasma-Lyte 148 compatibility information with concentration caveats for over 70 intravenous therapeutic drugs.
 “Ensuring Plasma-Lyte 148 compatibility data was available from desktop or a mobile device to coincide with the introduction of a new fluid this month at the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne (RCH), was a key driver in delivering this latest update. It’s very rewarding to see how collaboration between the pharmacists at RCH and our production team at MedicalDirector can rapidly deliver essential new information for  healthcare professionals”, said Diana Bicopoulos, Managing Editor of MedicalDirector Publishing and Knowledge.

Data-sharing proposal has pros and cons

Neville Yeomans and Sianna Panagiotopoulos
Monday, 29 February, 2016
LAST month the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) floated its proposal to require authors of papers reporting clinical trials to share with others the deidentified data from the individual patients who took part in the study.

The ICMJE published this as 14 simultaneous editorials, in journals as diverse as the New England Journal of Medicine, Ugeskrift for Laeger and the Ethiopian Journal of Health Sciences.

At first sight, and probably even at second sight, the idea has merit. It aligns with the NHMRC Statement on Data Sharing that says “research data should be made available for use by ... other researchers unless this is prevented by ethical, privacy or confidentiality matters”.

NBN: Malcolm Turnbull's 'faster, cheaper' roll-out falters

Date February 29, 2016 - 7:32AM

Mark Kenny

Chief political correspondent

The NBN says it will deliver fast broadband to every home and business in Australia, but when will we get it, what's the 'technology mix', how fast will it be – and how much will it all cost?
Malcolm Turnbull's cut-price National Broadband Network is facing mounting delays and rising costs, according to a damning internal progress report obtained by Fairfax Media.
The report, marked "commercial in confidence" and "for official use only", sets out a litany of problems in delivering the Coalition's supposedly more budget-friendly fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) model.

Fibre-to-the-node NBN is hardly powering on

  • The Australian
  • March 1, 2016 12:00AM

Supratim Adhikari

NBN Co has so far struggled to streamline the process of getting the cabinets activated on schedule.
The latest leak of a draft NBN Co document has once again put the company building the National Broadband Network on the defensive and highlighted the biggest pain point of the Coalition government’s favoured multi-technology mix rollout.
For all of its promise of early ­delivery and cost effectiveness, fibre-to-the-node hasn’t had a healthy start.
It may be teething troubles for NBN Co as the most problematic portion of the technology mix is brought into the fold, and NBN Co’s management is confident it can handle the situation.

1 comment:

Trevor3130 said...

An article on Safe Communication is available as pdf download from RACGP's 'Good Practice' corner.
It mentions healthdirect whose vision is To be a key part of a quality Australian health system by helping consumers manage their own health through leveraging technology to enable timely access to health and related services.
The whole article is worth reading, for its insights and frank assessments of where HealthIT is being nobbled.
Although it's the first I've heard of it, I assume healthdirect, being an outgrowth of COAG, has a direct link to the Federal Minister's office and is keeping them advised of the usefulness, or otherwise, of MyHR. I could be wrong, though.