Regional Electronic Medical Records

The Regional Electronic Medical Records Project is run by GRHA and aims to address the key area of demand management through the development and implementation of shared electronic medical records across the Grampians region supporting innovative models of care.

The fundamental components of this project include:

- The rollout of an integrated electronic medical record across the region, building on the success and investment in a modular Electronic Medical Record implementation at Ballarat Health Services, and;

- The development of a federated system of electronic access via a regional health information exchange using the Individual Health Identifier to link records for access of information by general practitioners, specialists and community health staff.

The Electronic Medical Record will be the core application for managing clinical information in the acute, subacute and community sectors. Significant investment has been made in implementing the digitised medical record at Ballarat Health Services (BHS) including electronic forms, pathology & radiology results reporting, work lists, internal referrals and discharge summaries. The region will utilise the existing BHS implementation in order to gain significant benefits and a significant overall cost reduction.

Rational

There are key drivers recognised from clinical process, administrative process and financial benefit. The availability of current, timely and accurate information, together with adequate communication between medical practitioners is paramount in ensuring the best possible outcome when a patient is transferred between different levels of care. If medical practitioners and other clinicians at each of the transferring and receiving health service sites have access to the same information an accurate diagnosis, care plan and treatment plan can be made in real time. This may also save unnecessary transfers.

Communication between clinicians is fundamental in ensuring the best possible outcome for patients. Access to a shared regional medical record containing relevant and current information will provide for seamless transfers. Access to a patient's history and medication information can reduce the 'time to treat' and improve patient outcomes and reduce unnecessary delays and risk.

Access to current and accurate data between wards, emergency departments and community and residential services has been widely flagged as a critical issue by a number of health services, due to the disparate paper based systems and lack of integration, let alone the unique geographical location of services and facilities in a sparsely populated remote rural part of Victoria.

This project will contribute to the achievement of more efficient and effective bed management and patient flow for health services across the region and improved clinical outcomes for patients and improved communication between health services, specialists, general practitioners and community health staff.

A Health Information Portal will provide a means of access to the electronically held information across the region. Access will be shared between Public Health Services and close partners including General Practitioners, Specialists, Community Health and neighbouring health services. The portal will provide secure access to accurate, relevant information at the point of care.

A Health Information Portal (Exchange) (HIE) will enable the secure electronic capture and exchange of health information, and ultimately, will allow patient data to follow patients across the continuum of care. It will support the use of clinical, public health and business analytics. It has potential to improve the efficiency of administrative and clinical processes.

If you'd like further information please either contact GRHA. or visit the sharepoint for the project

http://projects.grha.org.au/EMR/SitePages/Home.aspx