Media Release: Significant progress made on the National Digital Health Strategy

4 November 2019: The Australian Digital Health Agency 2018–19 Annual Report has been tabled in the Australian Parliament, outlining the Agency’s outcomes and operations between 1 July 2018 and 30 June 2019.

“The 2018–19 Annual Report shows the Agency is making significant progress toward the key priorities set out in the National Digital Health Strategy, endorsed by all state and territory governments through the Council of Australian Government (COAG) Health Council,” says Agency Chief Executive Officer, Tim Kelsey.

The Annual Report shows that in 2018–19, the Agency:

  • Provided My Health Records for 90 per cent of Australians, equipping people and their care professionals with centralised, digital access to vital health information.
  • Improved access to clinical information in My Health Record, with more than one billion documents uploaded to the system and significant increases in the number of providers uploading information.
  • Developed a national framework, and new interoperability standards, to ensure health professionals can securely and quickly send patient information to one another without using a fax machine.
  • Released the Pharmacist Shared Medicines List (PSML) document type to further improve medicines safety, piggybacking on the success of the Medicines View document and its aggregation of all relevant medicines and allergy data in a single, real-time view.
  • Facilitated consultations across every state and territory to lay the foundation for Australia’s next Interoperability Roadmap, which will set the direction for improving the ability of health systems to securely communicate with one another.

“Whereas in previous years our focus was on rebuilding momentum for digital health and on designing the way forward with our partners, in 2018 – 19 the Agency successfully implemented key parts of the National Digital Health Strategy to support improved health outcomes for Australians,” says Mr Kelsey.

“Today My Health Record is a fundamental feature of Australia’s health infrastructure, with a total of 1.5 billion documents in the system, with 523 million of those uploaded since 22 February 2019. We’ve made important strides in a range of other areas, such as supporting secure messaging and information exchange between healthcare providers.

“These types of accomplishments are improvements in themselves, but they also provide the foundations for future progress. We look forward to building on those foundations with all our partners in the community to support improvements in the health and wellbeing of all Australians.”

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.

Media Release: Significant progress made on the National Digital Health Strategy (PDF,577KB)