Thursday, September 07, 2017
It Seems We Are Rather A Long Way Behind With Digital Health – Do You Believe The Report?
This appeared a while ago but I have only just spotted it?
Lynne Minion | 16 Jun 2017
Australia has ranked last in its adoption of connected care technologies in the healthcare sector, according to research into the future-readiness of the healthcare systems of 19 nations, but Australians believe their system is far more digitally interconnected than it is.
With a “reality” score of 9.1 out of 100, Australia’s bottom ranking places it a stunning 31.9 points below the next lowest ranked healthcare sector of Saudi Arabia, which scored 41.
Despite the reality, many Australians perceive their healthcare system to have already implemented connected care devices and policies, earning a “perception” score of 50.5.
The last place slot in the connected care technologies category was a reflection of Australia’s low levels of spending on IoT hardware as a percentage of GDP and the lack of a cohesive health technology policy, according to the report commissioned by Royal Philips.
Yet the vast majority of healthcare professionals in Australia view connected care technology as important in improving the treatment (84 per cent) and diagnosis (82 per cent) of medical conditions.
“Australia is now falling behind globally,” Managing Director of Philips Australia and New Zealand, Kevin Barrow, said.
Industry initiatives such as the My Health Record are strong stepping stones in seeing patients take more ownership of their own health, Barrow said, but policy makers and private companies need to support industry in recognising the potential of technologies in healthcare.
“We need to move away from the current episodic diagnosis and treatment model. The adoption of connected care will greatly facilitate this, but getting it right requires input across both the public and private sectors, and policy-makers. Australia currently lacks industry-wide policy around integration and connected care technologies, and while discussions are happening, we are yet to see effective action.”
The problem is cost, with the Future Health Index finding 53 per cent of the population is concerned that the technologies will increase the price of healthcare, while 69 per cent of healthcare professionals believe that current funding mechanisms will prevent Australia from moving to a patient centric healthcare system.
But Barrow said connected care brings with it cost benefits.
Lots more here:
There is also some press coverage:
Australia’s high cost of healthcare is not matched by efficiency, according to a new study, which says government policy must encourage integration and the use of connected-care technology across the sector.
The Future Health Index, which surveyed more than 33,000 individuals across 19 countries, shows that Australia’s healthcare outlay of 9.4 per cent of GDP was above the global average but that relative to the expenditure, Australia’s health outcomes could be improved.
The global study, commissioned by Royal Philips, shows that Australia’s efficiency ratio at 9.5 falls below the 19-country average of 10.5, indicating the outcomes achieved by the healthcare outlay were not optimal.
Kevin Barrow, managing director of Philips Australia and New Zealand, said Australia’s current approach to healthcare had afforded the population great access and results but it had come at a high cost.
“The reality is that we still need better integration and the adoption of healthcare technologies to facilitate a more efficient value-based model of care,” he said.
The results of the survey also revealed that Australia was behind when it came to integration across the healthcare system and adoption of connected care technologies, compared to the 19-country average.
“It was surprising that when you look at integration of care and connected care, roughly half of the healthcare professionals and public surveyed in Australia said we were performing quite well, but in reality those scores were quite low,” Mr Barrow said.
“Sometimes the general public, because they have a fitbit, think technology is very pervasive, but the reality is it’s often not connected to useful information to manage their illness or general well being.”
Mr Barrow said there was an appetite in the industry to do something “different” in the healthcare system, but he was not confident the policy shift needed by government would be tackled in the short term.
“The sort of structural reform that is required can only be taken with a long-term view and we know that our nation’s leaders are constrained on occasion for shorter time frames,” he said.
“But when you talk to the people that operate in the system, there is a tremendous appetite for them to want to do things differently. Eventually, the population knows we cannot keep going on at this rate in terms of expenditure.”
Here is the link:
To me this seems a bit too harsh. We are not perfect but I am not sure we are quite as far down the ranking as that.
Interested to hear from others as to how credible this seems to be.
You can download and read the report from this link:
This is the direct link to the report:
Worth a browse to see how we compare globally in connecting our health information.
Posted by Dr David G More MB PhD at Thursday, September 07, 2017