PCEHR – are we there yet?

Since the launch of the Australian Government’s eHealth program a couple of years back, the uptake of PCEHR has been less than satisfactory to say the least. Why is it that a program that is focussed on improving the quality and speed of treatment is infected by procrastination – or is it?

While working with surgeons, specialists and other medical practitioners we always make it a point to have chat about PCEHR. Are they aware of it? Have their patients mentioned it?

Everyone thinks it is a great idea – but not as many are doing something about it. In most cases, it is simply about getting out of the comfort zone and doing something.To be PCEHR ready requires a buy-in from the patient, the doctor and the medical practice. So what is it?

PCEHR is Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record. An electronic summary of health record(s) of a patient that is stored on a secure system. It can be viewed by authorised healthcare professionals (GPs, specialists, health service providers) that are providing any sort of care to the patient. More importantly, the patient is in control of who has access to it and what information is accessible.

The benefits of such a system are significant. No longer does the specialist / consultant / GP has to go searching for past history of treatment, medication, allergies etc. As long as the information has been uploaded on PCEHR, and the doctor has permission to access the information online.

So, how does anyone get on the PCEHR bandwagon? For a start, we fellow Australians must register ourselves for eHealth. This can be done online by visiting here. In addition to that, the specialists / medical practitioners must also register themselves for eHealth. First, you will have to register your organisation / practice for eHealth. Once that has been approved, then each of the medical professionals working in that organisation will have to be registered as well.

eHealth is the way of the future. On an average a patient has around twenty two interactions with the health system, including four visits to the GP, twelve prescriptions and three visits to a specialist. eHealth brings all those interactions together and provides a consolidated view.

Contact us to find out more about how you can get your organisation eHealth ready.