Monday, August 20, 2012

New Zealand Seems To Be Really Moving On Health Information Exchange. And It Is Costing Peanuts Compared With the NEHRS.

I had the following e-mail during the week from Tom Bowden the CEO of HealthLink.

122 successful CareInsight lookups in a single week, in one region!

Dear Colleague,
When a patient arrives at a hospital emergency department it is probably one of the most distressing experiences they will ever have.  So it is essential that we do everything to ensure that each and every emergency department visit goes as well as possible.  By having information about a patient’s existing medical conditions, current treatment plan and medication history ED staff get a “running start” in terms of getting their emergency care underway.  CareInsight is the system that makes that possible. 
The CareInsight system is a world first in its field.  It is an online system that hospital and after-hours clinicians use to obtain important information about ED patients, directly from their general practices and pharmacies’ medical records systems.  CareInsight provides an instant window into the patient’s relevant medical details and provides hospital ED staff with the totally reliable and up-to-date information that they need to make the right interventions and get urgent treatments underway swiftly and confidently.
Last week in the Hawkes Bay District Health Board region, ED staff performed 122 successful CareInsight lookups.  Usage has been growing steadily over the past year but this is a new record.
Now in day-to-day use for over a year, CareInsight is really proving its worth and has become an essential ED tool.  Five regions have now implemented CareInsight or are in the process of rolling out CareInsight.  It is interesting to dwell on the proposition that if the results gained in the Hawkes Bay were extrapolated across New Zealand*, more than  6,000 Lookups would have occurred last week
To learn more about CareInsight please connect to this link to a video we have produced about the service and refer to the attached Privacy Impact Assessment to learn more about how it works.
Note:  *Hawkes Bay is home to 2% of New Zealand’s population.
Once looking at this video you can see the other things with e-referrals and so on that are also now being progressively rolled out.
I am happy to send the report to people on e-mail request  (it does not seem to be online) but it is probably easier to read about what is being done from this link:
The great thing about this system is that it is being implemented in a ground up, incremental way learning as people go to minimise the problems and maximise clinical benefits.
Just saying this is so much more like what we should be doing - and costing ourselves so much, much less in the process. Here is a working system delivering what the NEHRS hoped to do and it is all working, and being used, here and now!
This is the promise of e-Health that sadly NEHTA and DoHA just don’t get or if they do they are just going about things the wrong way. Better to travel slowly and learn along the way than what we have seen in the last two years.
As confirmation of that see here:

Sharing your health information

The way information about our health care is shared is improving. By the end of 2014 the Government’s aim is for all New Zealanders and the health professionals caring for them to have electronic access to their health information.
It is really good to see how calmly and carefully the NZ team are going about all this. The chances of success are looking more reasonable than what we are presently doing I reckon.
Great stuff.
Late Alert: Here is the link you need to all the material.
The document then has a link to the privacy assessment and video.