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More pathology labs and pharmacies in Australia connecting to My Health Record

More pathology labs and pharmacies in Australia connecting to My Health Record

Primary
Health Care
, Australian Clinical
Labs
, and seven other pathology software vendors and labs have signed
agreements with the Australian Digital Health Agency (the Agency) to share
reports with their patients via My Health Record.

This announcement made on November 27, follows Sonic
Healthcare’s agreement
to connect
with My Health Record in June. The Agency made a private sector
market offer to support other pathology software vendors. This offer included
labs managing their own software to update and connect with My Health Record.

In addition to Primary Health
Care and Australian Clinical Labs, the seven pathology software vendors and
labs who have also signed agreements with the Agency are: Cirdan, Genome.One, Infinity
Path, McCauley Software, Medical-Objects, MyHealthTest and Victorian Cytology
Service.

Primary Health Care CEO, Dr. Malcolm Parmenter, said that
today’s announcement is significant because the company’s laboratories provide
pathology testing in every state and territory of Australia. He said that they are
looking forward to beginning the process of sharing pathology reports with
patients from early next year and expect the number of their laboratories participating
in this initiative to steadily increase over the course of 2018.

Australian Clinical Labs Medical Director, Dr. Tony Landgren,
said “As the largest provider of pathology services to public and private
hospitals in Australia, being able to provide reports into My Health Record
will greatly enhance the continuity of care, and allow doctors to make
decisions that save and improve patient’s lives.”

Agency CEO, Tim
Kelsey
, said, “The largest diagnostic organisations in Australia have now
agreed to share their test reports with Australian consumers. We are working to
deliver a My Health Record for all Australians next year, unless they choose
not to have one. Health consumers will benefit from this significant commitment
by the pathology industry and their software partners.” 

The Australian government
allocated AU$374.2 million in its 2017-18 Budget to be invested over
two years, for the nationwide rollout of an opt-out model of My Health Record and to ensure every
Australian is a part of it, unless they choose not
to be.  Large private sector medical service
providers continue to join My Health Record. 

Chemist Warehouse and Corum
connecting to My Health Record

 A few days earlier on
November 24, Chemist Warehouse
and Corum representing 1,000
pharmacies  announced
their upcoming connection to My Health Record system in 2018. Chemist Warehouse
operates a retail chain of 400 pharmacies representing 30 per cent of the community
pharmacy market, while Corum is a leading provider of software solutions to
community pharmacies and pharmacy groups.

By connecting to My Health
Record, pharmacists can have access to timely information on a person’s current
medications, whether dispensed at hospital discharge, or through any community
pharmacy in the country, enabling them to play a more integrated role in
medications management and coordinated care.

Every community pharmacy
software vendor has now signed up to the Community Pharmacy Software Industry
Partnership to connect to the My Health Record system.

Agency CEO Tim Kelsey said
lauded the announcement saying, “Today’s announcement is a big step forward in
realising the Agency’s vision of comprehensive medicines information in My
Health Record, which will in turn provide improved health benefits for all
Australians.”

Pharmaceutical Society of
Australia (PSA) National President Shane Jackson said that My Health Record is
a game changer in the clinical care delivered by pharmacists. On November 9,
Minister for Health, Greg Hunt, announced a
partnership with the peak national body representing pharmacists, the
Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA). 

Chemist Warehouse and Corum will
join Minfos,
POS Works, and RxOne who recently connected
with My Health Record, while
Fred IT integrated its Fred Dispense product in 2013. Other software providers
are well advanced in their development work and are expected to integrate with
My Health Record system in the near future.

Moreover, community, hospital,
and academic pharmacists have formed
a Pharmacists Digital Health Leaders Network to encourage meaningful and
clinical use of My Health Record by pharmacists and pharmacies. The forty network
members will support local pharmacists in their area to engage with and use My
Health Records through digital health workshops and education events.

In July 2017, the Australian
Digital Health Agency and Pharmacy Guild of Australia entered into
a collaborative partnership
 aimed at driving adoption and use of the
My Health Record system by community pharmacies (supported by education and
training). 

Featured image: Newtown grafitti/ CC BY 2.0

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