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."

Tuesday, June 04, 2019

Commentators and Journalists Weigh In On Digital Health And Related Privacy, Safety And Security Matters. Lots Of Interesting Perspectives - Week 46.

Note: I have excluded (or marked out) any commentary taking significant  funding from the Agency or the Department of Health on all this to avoid what amounts to paid propaganda. (e.g. CHF, RACGP, AMA, National Rural Health Alliance etc. where they were simply putting the ADHA line – viz. that the myHR is a wonderfully useful clinical development that will save huge numbers of lives at no risk to anyone – which is plainly untrue) (This signifies probable ADHA Propaganda)
Note: I have also broadened this section to try to cover all the privacy and security compromising and impacting announcements in the week – along with the myHR. It never seems to stop! Sadly social media platforms get a large run this week and most weeks. Sadly there is also the need to recognize pollie based risks to privacy!

Revealed: one in five peers advise private business while serving in parliament

Analysis finds 169 peers working as advisers and 15 paid by foreign governments
One in five members of the House of Lords are working as consultants or advisers to private businesses at the same time as serving in parliament, the Guardian can reveal.
An analysis of the Register of Lords’ Interests shows 169 peers reported working as advisers earlier this year, with more than a dozen registering that they were also paid by foreign governments on top of the expenses they are entitled to as peers.
The coalition government’s Cabinet Office minister, Francis Maude, listed a string of foreign government clients, including the governments of Lesotho, Omanand New South Wales, the Canadian treasury, and the Australian Digital Health Agency.

Anti-vax ads flourishing on Facebook

  • By Jeff Horwitz
  • 12:00AM June 1, 2019
Ten weeks after Facebook pledged to fight vaccine misinformation, such content remains widely available across its platforms as the social-media giant grapples with how aggressively to limit the spread of hoaxes and ­deceptions.
Facebook as of this week is still running paid ads for a prominent anti-vaccination group that suggests unethical doctors have conspired to hide evidence of harm vaccines do to children. Both the company’s main site and its Instagram app recommend additional anti-vaccine content to users who view similar material. And the top three vaccine-related accounts recommended by Instagram are “vaccinetruth” “vaccinesuncovered” and “vaccines_revealed” — all advocates for the discredited claim that vaccines are toxic.
“We’re not where we want to be,” Monika Bickert, Facebook’s head of global policy management, said. “And we know that.”

My Health Record empowering Australians to take more control of health and wellbeing

28 May, 2019  ADHA Propaganda
Digital technology will reinforce the human imperative of medical care, according to Australian Digital Health Agency CEO, Tim Kelsey.
Addressing CEDA’s event on digital health in Melbourne, Mr Kelsey said medicine is still a fundamentally human endeavour.

“Digital is nothing if it is not a resource to support the humanity of medicine and improve the person-centredness of care,” he said.

“It is critically important that nothing we do, any of us in this historic moment, jeopardises or comprises the sanctity of the very human relationship that exists between the patient and their clinician at the moment of most vulnerable need."

Mr Kelsey, speaking during National Reconciliation Week, said while Australia has one of the best healthcare systems in the world, the health outcomes for remote Aboriginal Australians are shocking for many people, with incidences of disease completely unacceptable in a civilised twenty-first century society.

A day in the life of data: removing the opacity surrounding the data collection, sharing and use environment in Australia

29 May 2019
This research aims to remove some of the opacity surrounding the data collection, sharing and use environment in Australia. The report provides an overview of the data collection, sharing and use environment showing the typical flow of information from the user, the types of information collected, and inferences often made by companies based on that data. Eight privacy policies are analysed to assess readability, the data collection and sharing arrangements contained in those policies and the level of privacy controls available to consumers.
Consumer perspectives and reactions to data collection, sharing and use are also explored. Complementing CPRC’s own research from 2018, this qualitative research conducted by Greater Than X demonstrates consumers feel that they lack control over their data and do not understand what data collection is occurring. On-the-street interviews conducted the CPRC over March 2019 echo the findings of this qualitative research.
The report then examines some of the potential harms resulting from these data collection, sharing and use practices. While targeted advertising may be annoying, the real risks are discrimination, exclusion and manipulation. Policy responses, including requirements for transparency, greater consumer control, and accountability are key concerns for any government or regulator reviewing data practices and appropriate protections. Lastly, Greater Than X looks at better business practices that can be implemented to complement policy changes.

Australian Treasurer: Healthcare market poised for ‘robust growth’

Nathan Eddy | 31 May 2019
Higher spending on healthcare in the 2019/20 fiscal year federal budget, announced by Australian Treasurer Josh Frydenberg, will allow the country's healthcare market to experience “robust growth”, according to analysis published by Fitch Solutions.
The government’s plans call for an increase in healthcare spending over the coming years to AUD89.5 billion ($63.7 billion US) in FY2022/23, up from AUD81.8 billion ($58.2 billion USD) in FY2019/20.
Major areas of healthcare spending include strengthening Australia’s universal healthcare system Medicare by providing better access to treatment and screening services.

A new era for My Health Record in our Primary Health Network

30 May 2019 ADHA Propaganda
More than 90 per cent of Australians now have a My Health Record (MyHR), with millions of new records being created following the end of the opt-out period.
An online record that stores a person’s medical information and history all in one place, MyHR is set to be an integral component to Australia’s health system. Health professionals will be able to access health information about new and existing patients wherever they present, helping ensure people can receive more coordinated care.
Lisa, a nurse working in general practice in Williamstown, has found the system to be very useful and something all health professionals should consider promoting.
“At my clinic, we had a target of asking every patient if they had a My Health Record or if they wanted one,” Lisa said. “If you pitch it the right way, patients are really receptive to it.”

Forget being Human, this is Services Australia

By Julian Bajkowski on May 31, 2019 7:10AM

Name games tell us a fair bit about Morrison’s digital government playbook.

When it comes to politicians fist-thumping to show the public who’s really in charge of the bureaucracy, few things convey raw ministerial power and control better than an old-fashioned agency name change, coupled with a game of musical chairs for the mandarins to keep the ‘cardigans’ guessing.
It’s one thing to get (re)elected; but the imperative for any fresh government is to show the wider electorate that it does not take voters for granted. And that it’s ready, willing and able to learn from past mistakes to improve the lot of the average Australian.
For all the talk of digitisation, transformation and enhanced user experience, the one vital skill politicians and the bureaucracy first need is the ability to persuade and communicate their vision; so forming a positive new lexicon around why tech-based changes will be beneficial is crucial.
This, as Paul Shetler might say, is how it ‘chunks down’. It’s not all pretty, but it does let us know where we’re headed.

Amazon wants Alexa to hear — and record — all

  • By Tom Knowles
  • The Times
  • 8:21AM May 30, 2019
Voice-controlled assistants are fast becoming a common feature of the modern home, but many of Alexa’s owners struggle to shake the nagging fear that they are being recorded. Now, Amazon wants to make that a reality.
The tech company has registered a patent application with the US authorities that would enable the device to continuously capture everything a person says in case it hears the word “Alexa” or another so-called wake word.
Alexa-enabled devices, such as the Amazon Echo, can only perform tasks if the word Alexa or another wake word is said at the beginning of a sentence, rather than at the end or in the middle. This means that the devices cannot understand a phrase such as: “Play some music, Alexa. The Beatles, please.”
To get round this Amazon has made a patent application, first spotted by Buzzfeed News, that would allow Alexa devices to record and store anything that is being said and then listen out for a wake word.

Do you know who your iPhone talks to when you're sleeping?

By Geoffrey A. Fowler
May 29, 2019 — 11.57am
It's 3am. Do you know what your iPhone is doing?
Mine has been alarmingly busy. Even though the screen is off and I'm snoring, apps are beaming out lots of information about me to companies I've never heard of. Your iPhone probably is doing the same; and Apple could be doing more to stop it.
When you think your iPhone's resting, you might actually be incredibly busy.
On a recent Monday night, a dozen marketing companies, research firms and other personal data guzzlers got reports from my iPhone. At 11.43pm, a company called Amplitude learned my phone number, email and exact location. At 3.58am, another called Appboy got a digital fingerprint of my phone. At 6.25am, a tracker called Demdex received a way to identify my phone and sent back a list of other trackers to pair up with.
Our data has a secret life in many of the devices we use every day, from talking smart speakers to smart TVs. But we've got a giant blind spot when it comes to the data companies probing our phones.
James Riley
May 30, 2019

Digital lipstick on a delivery pig

Digital policy
Blue skies: It's all upside if the Commonwealth gets service delivery right
It’s early days, but in the absence detail let’s call it a poor imitation that flatters to deceive. ‘Lipstick on a pig’ also comes to mind. Scott Morrison’s Services Australia was flat-paddled into life via the Commonwealth’s Administrative Arrangement Orders on Wednesday and now we’re all open-mouthed and blinking.
The Prime Minister had unveiled Services Australia as part of the Cabinet reshuffle that followed the election. It is to be the federal government’s version of Service NSW, the highly successful service delivery agency set up by former Premier Barry O’Farrell eight years ago.
The administrative arrangements, which are effectively ScoMo’s marching orders to the Martin Parkinson and the rest of the department secretaries, moved the Digital Transformation Agency from its independent home under the department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.
The orders also changed the name of the ‘Department of Human Services’ into ‘Services Australia’.

How tech can tackle opioid addiction

The FT's US pharma and biotech correspondent Hannah Kuchler looks at the start-ups that are testing new ways of combating the devastating public health crisis. This includes the use of artificial intelligence to process language and predict the chances of relapse, and smart medication boxes that release one pill a day
Video Transcript:
Start-ups are adapting the tactics of the technology industry to try to help opioid addicts. The devastating public health crisis took the lives of 130 people a day in 2017. And now the US government, doctors, and health insurers are hunting for new ways to cope.

Expressions of Interest for Digital Health Clinical Reference Lead

Since its establishment in July 2016 the Australian Digital Health Agency has engaged Clinical Reference Leads (CRLs) to support the implementation of the Australian Digital Health Agency’s 2018-19 work program and Australia’s National Digital Health Strategy.
The Agency will be undertaking an Expression of Interest (EOI) process to procure CRL services to support the Agency’s clinical leadership function in 2019-20. This will be done via AusTender, the Australian Government’s procurement information system.
Through this process, the Agency is seeking to engage suitably qualified practicing clinicians and/or digital health subject matter experts, representative of the Australian health sector – covering the diversity of background, skills, experiences, perspectives and representation from across Australia – to benefit the work of the Agency.
The open tender process was published on the AusTender site on 10 May 2019 and will be open until Tuesday 4 June 2019.
If you are interested in engaging with the Agency as a Clinical Reference Lead, you can learn more here.
Tuesday, 28 May 2019 12:05

Nurses to benefit from new online My Health Record training

The Australian Digital Health Agency, in partnership with the Australian College of Nursing (ACN) is rolling out new e-learning modules on My Health Record to enhance nurses’ training.
The Agency says it has partnered with the ACN to develop the training, ensuring all materials are tailored to the nursing role. The training is accredited by the ACN and will count towards a nurse’s continued professional development.
According to the Agency, Australians will benefit from the rollout with improved patient safety through better documentation and continuum of care – and the new e-learning modules will ensure nurses are supported to confidently use My Health Record to improve documentation and consistency in data.

Microsoft, Facebook agree to help clean up ahead of Canadian election

By Kelsey Johnson and David Ljunggren
May 28, 2019 — 9.39am
Microsoft and Facebook have agreed to help boost the security of Canada's October election by removing fake accounts and cracking down on bots, a top government official said on Monday.
Last month the Liberal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau complained that the world's major social media companies were not doing enough to help combat potential foreign meddling in the vote and said Ottawa might have to regulate them.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has expressed concerns about potential election tampering.
Democratic Institutions Minister Karina Gould told legislators that the two companies had made commitments in a voluntary declaration on electoral integrity. "The Wild West online era cannot continue; inaction is not an option. Disinformation must not stand," said Gould, repeating the threat to crack down on the firms if necessary.

Bank's digital row shows the power of trust

James Eyers Senior Reporter
May 28, 2019 — 12.00am
An unfolding legal drama at small Australian bank Qudos is showcasing a new reality sinking in for companies everywhere: that digital know-how is valuable currency and that trust is the most valuable commodity of all.
For digital banks, the computer code that controls customers' experience is the key to success or failure. So when Qudos discovered aspects of its user experience (UX) code on the website of one of its competitors, the Australian Military Bank (AMB), it meant serious trouble.
However, this is not a case of one local bank pilfering from another. The key player in the drama is one of the world's largest technology vendors, Infosys, meaning this could turn into a David and Goliath battle of real significance.
"Millions of dollars is invested developing modern digital systems, yet courts have often struggled to apply copyright concepts to computer programs."

Did Morrison just kill the DTA?

By Justin Hendry on May 28, 2019 7:00AM

Analysis: Services Australia is nigh. So where to now for digital govt?

With the federal government set to create a centralised, digital-first government services agency in the image of Service NSW, a fundamental question now turns to the fate of the Digital Transformation Agency.
The surprise unveiling of Services Australia on Sunday logically implies a shakeup of service delivery arrangements with the potential to drastically alter the government's existing digital and IT fiefdom.
The new agency, to be be overseen by a dedicated Minister for Government Services, will be charged with simplifying customer-facing service delivery - a responsibility currently afforded to the DTA.
Deliberately borrowing from the NSW government, widely regarded as the one-stop shop model to beat, Services Australia will undertake the difficult task of integrating services using “technology and digital applications”.

Your health data was once between you and your doctor. But for how long?

ABC Science
By technology reporter Ariel Bogle
May 28, 2019
A visit to the doctor seems one-on-one. An intimate meeting and a sharing of secrets.
But how will that feeling change when the data gleaned from that interaction takes on unprecedented value?
It's a question that doctors and health regulators are grappling with as algorithms learn how to spot pneumonia, and health data becomes the chaff needed to train artificial intelligence.
"Previously, the patient is agreeing to supply their very intimate personal information ... to the doctor to help with the diagnosis and management of their own health," said Jacob Jaremko, an associate professor in radiology and diagnostic imaging at the University of Alberta.
"It's kind of a selfish thing, right? You provide, for your own care, for your own benefit ... your data."

How Estonia set a global benchmark for e-government

Andrus Kaarelson, the country's director of state information systems, explains how the public and private sectors have worked together to create e-Estonia
Estonia has earned a reputation as the world's most advanced digital society, with over 99 percent of its public services now available online.
The former Soviet republic's public services are powered by an extensive IT infrastructure, but Andrus Kaarelson, the government’s director of state information systems, says his country’s rapid digital development is not solely due to its technology.
"Technology is just an enabler," Kaarelson explained at the 2019 Digital Government Conference in London. "There has to be the political will to make the change happen."
Kaarelson, whose team is responsible for developing and operating e-Estonia’s central services and for coordinating its cyber security, gives much of the credit to a supportive government that has mandated a range of digital initiatives.

Australian caught in the middle as the US and China play hardball

  • 6:29AM May 27, 2019
The American and Australian Huawei bans are very, very different.
Ours was tentative, almost apologetic, not even announced; the US action against Huawei was announced in crushingly specific detail this month and will probably drive Huawei out of business.
But there is much more to the American attack on China that it launched two weeks ago than the ban on Huawei and it is going to give Australia and all US allies that deal with China a very big headache. It’s as if our parents are getting divorced: who gets custody?
Unless all of America’s May 15 actions are withdrawn as part of a trade deal, the US has made a kind of declaration of cold war against China.
It seems very unlikely to be a bargaining chip: although it was announced during negotiations over trade, Huawei has nothing to do with the trade war, and in any case the US actions go far beyond that company.

The future of Australia's doctors

This article first appeared in Pursuit, by the University of Melbourne, and is republished with permission. You can read the original article here.
AS Australia’s health expenditure continues to grow, currently at A$181 billion and 10.3% of our gross domestic product, governments and health insurers are increasingly concerned about both the growth in spending and its value – whether this growth is delivering improved health outcomes and access for the population.
This also reflects the concerns of the average Australian, including high out-of-pocket costs, the value of private healthcare, and persistently longer public hospital waiting times.
This mix of issues reflects the complex structure of our healthcare system, the changing patterns of disease (especially the increasing prevalence of chronic disease), high public expectations and technological change.
Within this context, our new ANZ-Melbourne Institute Health Sector report focuses on the future of the country’s medical workforce.
Key para:
Shared medical records like My Health Record have considerable potential to reduce waste and repetition, and could help increase much-needed co-ordination of care for patients with complex conditions.

My Health Record – providing advance care plans to the point of care

10 April 2019 ADHA Propaganda
Dr Matthew Grant
"Have you ever written down what you would want if you were very unwell?" I asked Colin, a man in his 70s who has end-stage lung disease.
"Oh yeah, I think I did that with my daughter – an advance care plan? We signed it off with our GP," he replied.
"That's great. Do you happen to have it with you?" I asked, pleasantly encouraged by Colin's forward planning.
"Hmmm, I'm not sure. It might be in the filing cabinet at home, or maybe with my daughter."
I encounter this sort of scenario far too often. Advance care planning is challenging on many fronts. It is time-consuming, often difficult to talk about, and healthcare professionals may find it a confronting conversation to initiate. However, it is worth the effort. It can translate to better care for the individual and their family, and health professionals can tailor care according to the patient's wishes.

What new hospitals and coal fired power stations might end up having common

 May 26, 2019    

Big bold new digital hospitals might be  to our future healthcare needs what, to some extent, coal fired power stations ended up becoming for our energy sector

Like the energy sector, healthcare paradigms are changing rapidly. Unlike the energy sector we haven’t even started to argue about why we aren’t planning and designing for a drastically changed  future in healthcare we all know is coming.
The energy sector will not be recognisable in a few years as we eventually settle on some sort of transition to a mix which will include a significant component of renewable energy. Underpinning that change has been the rapid rise in the cost effectiveness and reliability of renewable technologies, as much as a drive to reduce our carbon footprint. We haven’t managed that change well yet, but it’s at least accepted that the change is upon us and will have to be managed better.
In healthcare, the paradigm change is potentially even more drastic. It involves a rapid shift in our current structural set up to meet the demands of acute illness, to one which will be able to cost effectively manage a lot more chronic illness. The former was managed reasonably well through fee for service funding of our primary care sector (GPs) and a reasonably strong program of hospital development to meet growing population needs in certain regions.

Bettina McMahon in conversation with Wild Health on interoperability

May 26, 2019    

The COO of the Australian Digital Health Agency, Bettina McMahon, talks to the challenges of their secure messaging program and its context as the Agency rolls into its consultation phase for a much broader attempt at sorting out health interoperability in Australia

WH: Where does the agency see secure messaging in the context of the overall pitch of what interoperability means for the Australian digital health ecosystem?
BM: When Tim [Kelsey] started in his role in August 2016, and I started in my role, he began by listening. He spoke to hundreds of people in the country, and one thing that came through consistently, especially from GPs but also specialists, hospitals, others in allied health, was that “this all sounds fantastic, the digital health vision you’re pulling together – but it’s really frustrating for us that we have to rely on our letters and fax machines for secure messaging. It’s just not working as well as we need it to – and if you could just fix that one thing that would make our lives a whole lot easier.”
And because it kept coming up, as a theme consistently across different sectors, we set up a program that year – in September 2016 – to try and unpick what were the barriers to secure messaging working at a national scale and in an interoperable way.
The first two years was largely technical and now we’re looking to transition that so it’s not just technical.
The background is that we sort of jumped ahead of the national digital health strategy which we didn’t complete until 6 months after we started the secure messaging program. We and started working on secure messaging [early] because it was such a priority for healthcare providers.
In the meantime we developed a digital health strategy, and  interoperability was a big theme.
We’ve got multiple systems available for providers to choose from in Australia. In other regions a government might say ‘this is the one that everyone has to use’. Which brings things down to interoperability and standards being adopted and used consistently and making that work.

How well are we measuring our digital health progress?

May 26, 2019       Jeremy Knibbs

“If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. It’s a cliché that more than a few of my old bosses in corporate used on me during strategy, reforecasting and budget sessions. It was usually the smarter Dutch ones that pulled me up when I pitched something that sounded great but didn’t have the data […]

 “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it”. It’s a cliché that more than a few of my old bosses in corporate used on me during strategy, reforecasting and budget sessions. It was usually the smarter Dutch ones that pulled me up when I pitched something that sounded great but didn’t have the data to back it up. The Dutch have a big thing for numbers that align. Ones you can measure against the past and benchmark your progress into the future.
Following my interview with the COO of The Australian Digital Health Agency (ADHA) Bettina McMahon I was struck by just how much progress she outlined, versus a very vocal and largely negative backdrop of local industry leaders, commentators (including a few expert blogs) , independent experts and ,eek, the media (yes, us) .

My Health Record – Presentation and Demonstration

22, May 2019 ADHA Propaganda
Genetic and Rare Disease Network and WA Primary Health Alliance are working together to bring you a FREE information session to learn about the benefits of My Health Record and how to access the system.
My Health Record is an online summary of your health information. You control what goes into your record, and who can access it. Share your health information with doctors, hospitals and other healthcare providers anywhere, anytime. My Health Record may be a valuable resource for those living with rare disease.
If you have not opted out of the My Health Record system prior to the 31 January 2019, a record has been created for you and is available for you to access through www.my.gov.au
Please join us for networking and a light morning tea from 9am prior to the presentation.
We know how difficult (and expensive) it is to get babysitters on the weekend, so we’ve taken care of that for you. There will be kids entertainment in an adjoining room so you can concentrate on the presentation and your kids can have a great time. Numbers are limited for kids entertainment, so get in quickly. Entertainment commences at 9:40am, so don’t be late!
Venue: Heathcote Cultural Precinct – Kitchen Building
Address: 58/60 Duncraig Rd, Applecross WA 6153
Start time: Saturday 22 June at 9:00am
End time: Saturday 22 June at 11:00am
Comments welcome!


Anonymous said...

Be interested in how much Tim handed his buddy and what Australia got out of the deal - Second article UK ministers

The coalition government’s Cabinet Office minister, Francis Maude, listed a string of foreign government clients, including the governments of Lesotho, Omanand New South Wales, the Canadian treasury, and the Australian Digital Health Agency.

Guardian Today: the headlines, the analysis, the debate - sent direct to you
Read more
Lord Maude also advises the government of Bahrain on public sector efficiency, despite continued reports of human rights abuse. - END extract

Anonymous said...

Agree 7:25 AM. Hard to workout why ADHA would engage this chap on contract. Smells a bit more fishy than your normal smoked haddock.

Anonymous said...

ATO has set the standard for anyone saying anything and the ASD has made it quite clear that citizens will be invaded if they hold government to account. Both departments will be finding new uses for the My Hunt Record