Media Release - More Victorian patients and clinicians now have instant and secure access to pathology test results

04 February, 2020: More patients across Victoria are benefiting from convenient and secure access to their pathology reports with Melbourne Pathology the latest to start sending reports to My Health Record.

Victorian-based general practitioner, Dr Nathan Pinskier, says the whole process is seamless, from ordering a lab test for a patient to the results of that test being uploaded to My Health Record.

“When I need a patient to have a pathology test, I simply send an electronic request and the patient attends the lab with a paper copy. Since the lab already has the electronic request, there’s no human data entry, which greatly reduces the risk of patients receiving the wrong test. Once there’s a report, I receive a copy through my secure messaging software and my patient receives a copy in their My Health Record, where it can’t be lost and where future healthcare providers can review it to inform their own clinical decision-making."

“As a GP who is also the Medical Director of the after-hours DoctorDoctor service, I can tell you My Health Record is extremely valuable when seeing patients in the middle of the night when their regular doctor is asleep. Having quick access to a patient’s medication profile and recent test results can really help an after-hours doctor make a well-informed decision, particularly when that patient is in need of urgent care,” Dr Pinksier said.

Other Victorian labs sharing reports with consumers and clinicians in the My Health Record include Alfred Health, Monash Health and VCS Pathology with a full list of participating providers available online.

Anne Gore, a retiree who helps manage her husband’s health, says My Health Record has been particularly useful in helping locate the results of old test results and scans. She says she and her husband benefitted from My Health Record when they saw a new specialist and he asked about previous scans her husband had undergone.

“So we went into his My Health Record and it showed the date, location, and clinic of the MRI we couldn’t remember. It was so useful in that initial consultation. It was simple, and it doesn’t matter where you are – you’re able to track that sort of information,” she says.

Professor Meredith Makeham, a GP and Chief Medical Adviser for the Australian Digital Health Agency, says Melbourne Pathology’s connection to My Health Record is another important step in linking-up Victoria’s health system.

“Investigation results are one of the most common tools doctors use to evaluate your health. In the 2018-2019 financial year alone, Medicare funded over 147 million pathology tests.

It’s easy to quickly lose track of your results, particularly if you don’t have a regular GP or when you are seeing a range of healthcare professionals to manage multiple conditions and tests.

“My Health Record allows you to keep your important test results safe in one place, which you and your healthcare providers can access at any time to make more informed decisions about your treatment or care.” says Professor Makeham. Key statistics from March 2019 to December 2019:

  • 22.68 million My Health Records
  • 12.99 million records with information in them
  • 1.7 billion documents in the system
  • 49.3 million clinical documents
  • 101.4 million medicine documents
  • 43% of pathology and diagnostic imaging providers connected
  • More than 32 million pathology reports uploaded
  • Over 1 million pathology and diagnostic imaging reports uploaded in December alone

ENDS

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About the Australian Digital Health Agency

The Agency is tasked with improving health outcomes for all Australians through the delivery of digital healthcare systems, and implementing Australia’s National Digital Health Strategy – Safe, Seamless, and Secure: evolving health and care to meet the needs of modern Australia in collaboration with partners across the community. The Agency is the System Operator of My Health Record, and provides leadership, coordination, and delivery of a collaborative and innovative approach to utilising technology to support and enhance a clinically safe and connected national health system. These improvements will give individuals more control of their health and their health information, and support healthcare providers to deliver informed healthcare through access to current clinical and treatment information. Further information: www.digitalhealth.gov.au

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