Health IT and horrible literary allusions got mixed together this week for Pulse+IT's brains trust as we pondered the tales of two different EMR implementations in two different cities. Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne had the best of times, our story on its Epic implementation from last week racking up a huge amount of hits on our site. It's destined to be one of our most popular ever.
While it wasn't quite the worst of times for Sydney's Northern Beaches Hospital – there has been far, far worse publicity than this, we assure you – the ill-fated opening of the hospital last year has now caught Telstra Health's EMR in its spotlight.
Pulse+IT headed to HISA's Health Informatics Conference in Melbourne this week, as we are wont to do, and what a smashing event it turned out to be. The focus at HIC is often on the acute care sector and, naturally, health informatics, and there was certainly plenty of that, but we were very pleased with the depth of presentations from primary care and even aged care this year.
We were also delighted to see the former chair of the RACGP's eHealth expert committee, Nathan Pinskier, pick up HISA's prestigious Jon Hilton award. Dr Pinskier, who does a huge amount of voluntary work in the background lobbying for standards and quality in health IT, joins luminaries such as Grahame Grieve, Adam McLeod, Mike Georgeff and Terry Hannan in winning the award.
We must admit that yesterday's announcement by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission that it had launched legal action against health IT firm HealthEngine was a bit of a surprise, coming as it does over a year after the online booking service was thoroughly roasted in the media for its decision to edit or delete patient reviews of practices on its site.
The main surprise was with the consumer watchdog showing a bit of bite when we thought it was due a new set of dentures. However, the ACCC recently wrapped up an inquiry into digital platforms and is keen to see consent and notification requirements under the Privacy Act strengthened, and HealthEngine may just have found itself a case study.