Monday, August 27, 2012

Currently Reporting On the NEHRS Is Not Painting A Good Picture. Transparency On What Is Happening Would Surely Help.

Today we have had two articles on the NEHRS / PCEHR appear.
First we have:

Canberra admits PCEHR delays

THE Gillard government has confirmed that key components of the personally controlled e-health records program missed the crucial June 30 deadline, but says the entire system has now been "implemented".
Some items have yet to be properly tested, which means complete rollout will take a few more months.
The opt-in PCEHR scheme allows consumers to enter personal information, medical history and medication details. They can choose which healthcare organisations can see and edit their record, and view a log of those who have accessed and added information to the record.
One of the biggest benefits of the system is that consumers can share their health information with healthcare professionals from a central online system.
Although the program's national infrastructure partner, Accenture, missed the deadline to provide a working solution for a slew of offerings, the Department of Health and Ageing refused to say if the company would be penalised.
The department declined to respond when asked whether the Accenture contract provided for any damages or penalties -- other than delays in payment -- for missing deadlines.
Lots more here:
Second we have:

Threat to privacy in e-Health records

PATIENTS who want to keep private a visit to a psychiatrist, the use of a mental health medicine or an abortion under the new e-Health online system will have to ensure Medicare and pharmaceutical subsidy data is not linked to the new record.
The only other way to keep the information private would be to pay the full cost of the treatment and refuse Medicare and pharmaceutical subsidies - or use a fake name, a privacy expert said yesterday.
Consumers who set up an e-Health record will be asked if they want to attach their Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme records and Medicare general patient information such as medication and doctors provider information.
Macquarie University ethics and legal expert Julie Zetler said the "last bastion" of privacy was a health record.
But there were major concerns about how private information would be under the new Personally Controlled e-Health Record (PCEHR) rolled out on July 1.
The information will reveal past or planned abortions, or mental health consultations, and could be viewed by doctors or other health professionals such as nutritionists and complimentary health care providers.
More here:
All this mainstream media commentary on the problems with the NEHRS Program is really only going to be calmed down if we see a great deal more transparency as to what is happening with the overall program and what the ‘real’ plans and probable deliverables are.
No amount of spin from the legions of paid spinners in DoHA and NEHTA will work in my view.
I found this interesting in this context.

Departments splurge $10m on monitoring the media

FEDERAL government departments and agencies are spending more than $10.3 million a year checking what is said about them in the media.
The hefty monitoring bill from external companies would pay for more than 100 full-time staff each earning $100,000 a year.
An analysis by The Australian revealed the Department of Health and Ageing ploughs more than any other department or agency into monitoring -- with a bill of $940,000 for press clippings and transcripts in 2011-12.
Lots more here:
Right now these people are not advising their masters properly as to how to give the program a decent image and obtain / regain consumer and provider trust.