There was some big news in electronic medical records this week, with the South Australian government giving the green light to the roll-out of Allscripts' Sunrise EMR and patient administration system in additional metro hospitals. SA Health has had a troubled history with what was formerly known as EPAS, having launched a highly ambitious program to roll the combined EMR/PAS out to all of its hospitals over a decade ago before becoming bogged down in implementation troubles.
Having gone live in a handful of hospitals, the project was halted in 2018 and an independent panel took a close look at its future before a decision was made to separate the EMR from the PAS and try a different implementation model at Mt Gambier and Royal Adelaide.
In a week in which the US hit a milestone and recorded over 100,000 new COVID-19 cases in one day, there was far more positive news in these parts as Victoria recorded a full week with no new cases, in a very welcome sign that it has successfully cracked the second wave.
There will still be questions asked about the capacity of its test and trace regime, with the Victorian parliament's legal and social issues committee, chaired by cross-bench MP Fiona Patten, running an inquiry beginning on November 16.
The Australian government's much-vaunted, much-plugged COVIDSafe app came under the spotlight this week as Senate Estimates hearings got under way in Canberra and the opportunity to grill health department officials on their COVID-19 response, including their thoughts on Victoria's contact tracing capabilities, presented itself.
Labor has heavily criticised the app since its release and its seems with good reason, as it doesn't appear to work very well. The opposition overplayed their hand a tad with claims that it had only found two positive contacts at a cost of $70 million, as that figure turned out to be vastly overinflated. Department of Health assistant secretary Caroline Edwards clarified that the app had cost $5 million to develop and maintain, with a further $6.95 million to plug it.