St Vincent's the first hospital to connect to the PCEHR

Sydney’s St Vincent’s Hospital has become the first hospital in Australia to connect to the PCEHR, and has achieved another first in uploading an electronic discharge summary to the system.

Late last week, St Vincent's accessed the PCEHR of one of its patients, allowing the hospital to see a recent and up-to-date summary of his healthcare information uploaded by his GP, along with his recent Medicare history.

The hospital was also able to transmit a full electronic discharge summary to the system, in what is a major breakthrough in eHealth in Australia.

Discharge summaries are intended to support the continuity of care of the patient as they leave hospital and include information such as diagnosis, diagnostic investigations, tests and procedures performed, clinical interventions and medications upon discharge.

The summary was delivered securely to the national system in an industry-agreed, standardised format. St Vincent’s used Emerging Systems' deLacy clinical information system to connect to the PCEHR.

Emerging Systems was one of the first clinical software vendors in Australia to become PCEHR conformant, achieving its certification in late August.

It has been working closely with St Vincent's in the Eastern Sydney Connect Wave 2 trial, helping to test the transmission of admission and discharge notifications and discharge summaries from St Vincent's to local GPs.

In September, local GP Ray Seidler uploaded his first shared health summary to a patient's PCEHR and has long heralded the importance of an electronic discharge summary to GPs.

“Some patients forget to bring their letter to the GP and so much pertinent information gets lost,” he said. “Now we have a fail-safe method of information transfer. This makes the patient happy and produces rejoicing amongst us GPs who were previously left out of the loop.”

St Vincent’s Health Network CEO Jonathan Anderson said it was a proud day for one of Australia’s oldest public hospitals.

“We are once again so proud to be at the forefront of technology in healthcare,” he said in a statement.

“This is a significant milestone for our project and for our organisation. At St Vincent’s we are very cognisant of the importance of communicating critical healthcare information back to our patient’s GP and it means a lot to us to be able to put that into practice today.”

Posted in Australian eHealth

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