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E-Health benefits spread as Geelong team to lead roll-out



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THE HON NICOLA ROXON MP

Minister for Health and Ageing

MEDIA RELEASE

28 March 2011

E-Health benefits spread as Geelong team to lead roll-out

Patients are set to benefit from a better and safer medication system to be developed by a team from Geelong that has been chosen as one of nine new projects to lead the roll-out of e-health records.

Minister for Health and Ageing Nicola Roxon today announced the FRED IT consortium comprising of local doctors, pharmacy organisations and IT providers had been selected as an e-health lead implementation site for the Gillard Government’s $467 million national personally controlled electronic health records (PCEHR) project.

“The team will develop an e-health system that allows doctors to see their patients’ medication history through the Medview system,” said Member for Corangamite, Darren Cheeseman.

“When a patient chooses to sign up to the Medview service, health practitioners such as GPs, specialists and nurses who are chosen by the patient, will be able to view their medication history.

“This will lead to faster diagnosis and cut down on medication errors as the doctor will be able to see the patient’s medication history including any allergies.

“This is the first time that Australian clinicians will be able to see a combined list of prescribed and dispensed medications regardless of how many different doctors and pharmacies the patient has attended,” said Mr Cheeseman.

“It’s great news that a team from Geelong has been chosen for this important project,” said Richard Marles, Member for Corio.

“FRED IT Group is the project lead that includes the GP Association of Geelong, the Pharmacy Guild, Pharmacy Society of Australia and software vendors,” said Mr Marles.

Minister Roxon explained that e-health is one of the critical elements of the Gillard Government’s efforts to modernise Australia’s health system through national health reform.

“In these nine projects we can see practical examples of how e-health can improve heath care for patients,” Ms Roxon said.

“Most importantly, these projects can help to reduce the chance of medical errors and save patients from having to repeat their health history every time they visit a new doctor.

“These projects will lead the roll out of e-health records for a wide range of patients, including Indigenous Australians in the NT, WA and SA, chronic disease patients in Western Sydney and aged care and palliative patients in NSW, the ACT and Tasmania.

“With more than 90 applications received, it’s clear there is a high level of support for e-health. These nine new sites will add to our existing three lead implementation sites that are busy working to implement their program.

“Our 12 e-health lead implementation sites are aiming to have more than half a million Australians enrolled before the national launch of e-health records next year.”

The Gillard Government is investing up to $55 million in these nine lead implementation sites as a part of its overall investment of $467 million so that patients will be able to sign up for a personally controlled electronic health records from 1 July 2012.

Details of the lead implementation sites and the National e-Health Conference Report can be downloaded from www.yourhealth.gov.au.

For all media inquiries, please contact the Minister's Office on 02 6277 7220

Media note: All nine organisations were selected following a competitive process by the Department of Health and Ageing and National E-Health Transition Authority. All organisations managing these projects will now develop their final plans over the next eight weeks to ensure their work programs clearly meet national objectives before receiving final payments to implement the projects.