- Updated Nov 11 2018 at 5:13 PM
Thursday, November 22, 2018
There Is A Very Clear Lesson In All This That Digital Start-Ups Need To Keep In Mind.
This appeared a little while ago:
Leading start-up investors have criticised the federal government's "disastrous" rollout of the My Health Record system aimed at digitising medical records, saying the policy instability is crushing innovation.
Australian health IT start-up Tyde is the creator of the first consumer-focused app – a single point to access and manage records and appointments that can join the entire family's health records together – for the federal government's My Health Record that is being rolled out by the Australian Digital Health Agency.
All Australians will have a My Health Record created automatically unless they opt out by November 15, which has sparked fears over privacy and safety of health information.
Tyde is now mulling its future after proposed legislative changes to the My Health Record Act, which was highlighted by the Morrison government last week following a Senate inquiry.
In April, Tyde co-founder Romain Bonjean was upbeat about the two-year-old company's future, but things have turned quickly as the government backflipped on allowing Tyde and other third party developers access to personal data with the consent of the individual. The government has also reneged on allowing heath insurers access to personal data with consent, which Mrs Bonjean says, is a "disaster" since private health insurers are driving innovation in care coordination.
Mr Bonjean, who holds a 30 per cent stake in Tyde, said the company's future is at stake following the poor handling by the government. A shareholder meeting is due to take place this week to determine whether Tyde will be wound up.
"It's going to be a political football at the next election," he said. "If a Liberal government can't get itself together on this, we are in trouble.
"I think Greg Hunt's decision to bend to the Senate inquiry is sending digital health backward in Australia. The agreement the agency issued to us is crazy. One day we can store data with consent, and the other day we can't."
"It's completely destroying Australian digital health innovation," he added.
Tyde started with seed capital of just $800,000 and earlier this year raised an additional $3 million from investors such as entrepreneur Dean McEvoy, Christopher Hill from Chicago Ventures, and Alan Jones, a founding investor in Startmate and Blackbird Ventures.
Mr Jones said 18 months ago he was feeling bullish about Australian innovation under the then prime minister Malcolm Turnbull, who appeared to be embracing innovation and technologies.
"The government was talking about how we need to move fast," said Mr Jones, who also runs M8 Ventures. "Sometimes in these lean experiments we will run, we will slip up, but we will learn quickly from those mistakes and adjust policy based on what we learn from those experiments.
"Instead, what they have is an administration which is desperately focused on not losing the next federal election.
"It's become impossible to trust that the strategy today will be the strategy in a month's time, much less in five years."
William Harris, whose family has made millions in aged care and is also a Tyde backer, agreed that Australia could be a leader health IT, but heavily criticised the government for "dropping the ball" on My Health Record.
"This has become a political football," he said. "All the people who are working in tech start-ups are wondering what the architecture will be. Australia has some of the brightest minds in this area, and they are being held ransom by Canberra.
"If they got their head into the future they could have a world class blockchain system – something to showcase to the world. No one in the health industry has faith in what My Health Record is any more."
The simple lesson is that you must ensure your business model is robust and profitable without any Government involvement. They simply cannot be relied on.
It is as simple as that.
Posted by Dr David G More MB PhD at Thursday, November 22, 2018