Zedmed releases v22, plans further PCEHR integration

Clinical and practice management software provider Zedmed has released version 22 of its product, featuring the integration of two additional online appointment booking services as well as the ability to add new secure messaging providers.

Zedmed is also continuing its work on further integration with the PCEHR, including incorporating the facility to register patients' PCEHRs directly through Zedmed and developing a view of the information contained in the National Prescription and Dispense Repository (NPDR).

Zedmed has had full PCEHR functionality since September last year with a full release rolling out in October, and to date, 82 per cent of clients are using the PCEHR-compatible version, Zedmed's operations manager, Emily Elst, said.

“This includes both specialists and general practice, and some of the general practice sites are in the process of finalising their registrations and PCEHR set-up now,” Ms Elst said.

“Leading up to the first of May, we were getting a lot of inquiries through to support for help to get set up with the HI Service and to get the PCEHR running. A lot of them are now prepared and switched on but how much they are using it, we don't know.”

Zedmed business analyst Jane Blakeley said she had been working on the specifications to allow users to register patients, but had not decided on when it will be released.

“Certainly work has been started, and for the NPDR as well,” Ms Blakeley said. “We will be updating the information that we send to eRx so that the required consent for whether the prescription should be uploaded to the NPDR via eRx can be sent through.

“Once the NPDR is then online, those prescriptions will be able to be seen on the NPDR. The other part is creating a view so that you can actually see all of the prescription and dispense information for the patient that have been loaded to the NPDR.”

Zedmed has also integrated with online appointment booking services DocAppointments and Appointuit, in addition to existing integrations with Health Engine and Clinic Connect, Ms Elst said.

“The practice can pick from any of those providers,” she said. “They all offer a slightly different solution. It gives the clinics the option to choose the online appointment system that works the best for them. It's really simple to integrate any of those with Zedmed.”

Another new feature is the ability to add different secure messaging providers apart from the existing capability with HealthLink and Argus to the Global Options/Communications section.

“We've got the ability now where you can add anyone who is SMD compliant,” Ms Blakeley said. “It's up to the practice to ensure that the service that they are aiming to use for SMD compliance is actually SMD compliant.”

Version 21 of Zedmed, released in March, also included the ability to create CDA eReferrals, which will at some stage be able to be uploaded to the PCEHR. Ms Blakeley said the primary purpose of eReferrals is point to point referrals between clinicians, but Zedmed has the capability to upload them to the PCEHR when the system is able to receive them.

Version 22 also includes new icons to display smoking status, including whether the patient is a non-smoker, an ex-smoker as well as a current smoker. When the cursor is held over the icon, the frequency of smoking as well as the number of cigarettes per day is displayed, as well as the year started and year stopped if applicable.

“It's just a little thing but it makes it so much easier for the doctors to see at a glance what the smoking status is,” Ms Blakeley said.

“They are not big show-stoppers but there are some little things that people have been wanting that we were able to do in conjunction with the eHealth work.”

Ms Blakeley said more prominent marketing of the PCEHR was beginning to appear, with cinema advertising of the system now underway, and she herself has found the PCEHR useful.

“Even though it's not widespread in practices, it is already useful,” she said. “I registered my daughter's PCEHR because I wanted to find out about her childhood immunisations. We got a notice from school saying she may need additional vaccinations, so we should check with the Australian Childhood Immunisation Register (ACIR) to find out what she had already, and I thought of phoning ACIR but I registered her for a PCEHR instead.

“It took about 10 minutes to register her, and it was there immediately. It was brilliant. Chalk one up for the PCEHR.”

Posted in Australian eHealth

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