NACCHO ehealth news:Failed $1 billion electronic health records system faces the axe

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LABOR’S bungled $1 billion electronic health records system will be reviewed after being used by so few people it ended up costing $200,000 per patient.

Health Minister Peter Dutton yesterday said just a few hundred doctors were using the system with just 5000 patients using the Personally Controlled Electronic Health Records program which has previously been described as “shambolic”.

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A lack of software had prevented many doctors even accessing patient records.

“The problem is that the former government spent about $1 billion in this area and the number of people actively using the records numbers in the thousands,” he told Sky News. “There are only a few hundred doctors actually uploading details into people’s files. It has been a scandal. On those numbers it runs at about $200,000 a patient.”

Executive director of the UnitingCare Health Group in Queensland, Richard Royle, who is also vice president of the Australian Private Hospitals Association, has been given the job of reviewing the program.

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Australian Medical Association president Dr Steve Hambleton will help with the review.

Mr Dutton said: “The government fully supports the concept of electronic health records but it must be fit for purpose and cost effective.”

He compared the roll-out of the e-health records program to the cost blowouts associated with the National Broadband Network.

The review will be open to submissions from the public

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