Sunday, June 04, 2017
The ADHA Issues A Tender For Work It Should Be Doing Itself In My View. Also Some Very Odd Terms.
This appeared last week.
Australians and their clinicians want a seamless health system which delivers high quality, safe care through better sharing of information.
The Australian Digital Health Agency today has released a Request for Tender (RFT) to develop a Strategic Interoperability Framework for Australia.
Ms Bettina McMahon Executive General Manager, Government, Industry & Delivery will lead this important work, saying "Sharing patient information across the Australian healthcare system is a complex issue requiring the alignment of policy, workflow, patient information, even business models."
The Australian Digital Health Agency has a requirement for the provision of services to develop an interoperability strategy for the digital health ecosystem in Australia.
"Interoperability requires recognising the known concerns of patients and healthcare providers and working through useful approaches to manage the potential risks."
"Ultimately, an interoperable health system will provide a seamless service experience for a person using health services," said Ms McMahon.
The CEO of the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care, Adjunct Professor Debora Picone AM, has welcomed the decision to tender for a national interoperability framework: "We know the key to a high-quality health care system is the secure, timely and accurate sharing of information between health providers and their patients."
"The Commission is looking forward to working with the Agency and Australian jurisdictions to support an interoperable health system," said Adjunct Professor Picone.
The Agency's recent consultation with the community, including more than 1,000 survey responses and written submissions, revealed that over 65% of respondents said the Australian healthcare system is difficult to navigate. People want to know the cost, quality, and availability of services, and experience a more integrated service experience.
The outcome of the RFT will shape the future design of an interoperable health system where the Australian Government continues to own, operate and deliver the infrastructure and work with industry to ensure that Australians can access the health information they need where and when they need it.
Responses to the RFT close at 11am local Sydney time on Monday 26th June 2017, with a procurement phase for the new system expected to commence in the middle of 2017.
Download the following RFT document:
Here is the link:
The core of the Request for Tender (RFT) is the services required:
B.1. Description of Services
There are two key deliverables to be provided by the successful Tenderer as part of the Services.
a. to undertake a review of current state that documents successful interoperability efforts in other jurisdictions or industries where relevant to the Australian health system and the key success factors, not limited to technological factors (the measures of success should also be spelt out); and documents the current health interoperability directions and strategies that are being pursued in the jurisdictions within Australia. The review of the current state is required to include an international literature review to inform the Agency of what is working in other jurisdictions. The successful Tenderer will be required to:
i. provide a written report detailing its findings from its review of the current state;
ii. present its findings to the Agency in the form of a powerpoint presentation.
to develop a ‘Strategic Interoperability Framework’ to support the Agency in the development, delivery and ongoing assurance of a digitally interoperable environment within the Australian healthcare sector. This Strategic Interoperability Framework will be required to include an overview of guiding interoperability principles and the component parts of an interoperable health eco-system that would deliver more connected services to people accessing health services in Australia. This Strategic Interoperability Framework will be required to establish a practical approach to deliver a digitally interoperable health system for Australia and deliver the Agency’s vision of interoperability. It will be used as the foundation for an implementation plan to address current disconnections and move Australia to a more interoperable environment within a 5 and 10 year timeframe.
b. To support this second key deliverable, it is a requirement that the successful Tenderer develop a consultation plan for approval by the Agency.
B.1.2. During the provision of the Services and the development of the strategic interoperability framework, the successful Tenderer (if any) will be required to consider the following factors:
i.ii. clearly identify component parts of the current state of the system with respect to interoperability principles which are working effectively, and where there are gaps that require modifications, improvements and further developments in order to address these
ii.iii. present its findings to the Agency in the form of a powerpoint presentation.
a. the broad range of digital health related interoperability standards, guidelines and policy which are required across different technical, professional and safety domains to enable an interoperable health care environment, their variable states (and drivers) of development and adoption, and their interconnections with each other, best practice and current industry and jurisdictional directions, as reviewed in the first deliverable, being the review of the current state;
b. the ability to connect and empower care providers and to support people to have more control and choice;
c. the Agency’s core principles including co-design and the engagement of health care consumers, clinicians, industry and research in the creation and ongoing development of all of its products and services;
d. an evaluation process to determine the success of the development and application of the suggested interoperability strategic framework;
e. the appropriate balance between cost, outcome, efficiencies and risk in the adoption of the suggested interoperability strategic framework, including funding considerations for the potential adoption and ongoing development and assurance with compliance of interoperability requirements for health services;
f. the suggested Strategic Interoperability Framework should be developed and operate in harmony with our developing national digital health strategy and the Agency’s ongoing workplan priorities; and
g. the suggested Strategic Interoperability Framework should support the principles of equity and access for all Australians to safe and high quality health care services.
B.1.5. The Strategic Interoperability Framework will be required to include the following audiences:
a. the community; including healthcare consumers and their carers;
b. software vendor organisations, including clinical software and secure messaging vendors; innovators new to the health sector; and the system operators (e.g. HI Service operator, NASH operator, My Health Record system operator) via the Australian Digital Health Agency;
c. Australian Commission for Safety and Quality in Healthcare; and
d. Standards Australia and its digital health subcommittee/s.
B.1.6. Prior to the commencement of this consultation, the successful Tenderer (if any) will provide a consultation plan to the Agency for approval.
B.1.7. The successful Tenderer (if any) will be required to provide weekly project status reports to the nominated Program Manager within the Agency. The format of these reports will be specified by the Agency.
----- End Extract.
Strangely there is the following just below the extract above:
Commencement of Services 17th of July 2017
The Services are required to be delivered in full by 30th of August 2017.
So it seems, as best I can tell, the whole of the work is to happen in about six weeks – obviously a really in-depth study. (At another point Sep 30th 2017 is mentioned – but not clear why.)
From my perspective I have simply no idea what can usefully achieved in the time available and why the skills to undertake this work are not in the ADHA. Surely this is very specialist work which general IT consultants would need considerable time to become familiar with?
Also, the idea of developing a plan for the next 5-10 years in six weeks seems bizarre to say the least!
This is certainly an RFT I would let go through to the keeper.
Posted by Dr David More MB PhD FACHI at Sunday, June 04, 2017