Digital health agency launches My Health Record resource for children

By Shannon Jenkins

Friday March 13, 2020


The Australian Human Rights Commission and the Australian Digital Health Agency have paired up to design a resource which teaches school children about the My Health Record system.

The ADHA manages the Federal government’s digital health records system, which is currently used by 22.65 million Australians.

Children aged 14 years and over can use My Health Record independently, or they can grant access to parents or guardians. They also have the power to cancel their digital records at any time.

Designed by the national children’s commissioner Megan Mitchell, the lesson plans aim to teach students in Years 5 to 10 about their rights when managing their medical information.

Mitchell said the resource — launched on Thursday — would help younger children prepare for future decisions, and help older teenagers “understand the implications of their decisions”.

The lesson plans are aligned with the Australian curriculum, and were co-designed by school students in Queensland, New South Wales, and Tasmania.

The ADHA’s interim CEO, Bettina McMahon argued young people could be some of the “greatest beneficiaries of the My Health Record” because of their proficiency in using technology.

“Just as we support children and teenagers to learn how to use social media safely, we are also supporting them to learn about how their health information is used and how they can control that,” she said.

“We look forward to continuing to work with the National Children’s Commissioner on ways to improve health literacy among young people.”

Last month it was revealed that the Department of Health’s plans to this year share de-identified My Health Record data by default for public health and research purposes was delayed to 2021.

Health delayed the release of the datasets due to problems with the governance and privacy principles needed for the data to be released.

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