The Australian Digital Health Agency has awarded Deloitte the contract to deliver a secure and scalable platform that will simplify the access and exchange of health information, and support the digitisation of government services.
ADHA CEO Amanda Cattermole on Monday said the modernisation of the national digital infrastructure was the agency’s most important strategic focus for 2021, with Deloitte to deliver the first phase — the Health Information Gateway.
“A connected healthcare system is at the heart of the National Digital Health Strategy and while our national digital health infrastructure has already delivered significant benefits for Australians, it is now time to modernise and unlock the potential that new technologies offer,” she said.
“The new Health Information Gateway will reduce costs and technical and operational complexity often faced by healthcare providers by setting in place a single, consolidated gateway with reusable interfaces available to developers. And it requires fewer connections to be developed between healthcare providers and My Health Record and other digital health products and services. This goes a long way to making the sharing of patient information between healthcare providers easier.”
The agency said the Health Information Gateway was a ‘pivotal’ piece of technology that would allow the ADHA to deploy and manage additional health information repositories and health data exchanges.
The gateway would also support a range of government authentication mechanisms so that information could be more easily and securely shared across the ‘health ecosystem’, the agency noted.
“This is the first step towards a simplified, future-ready national digital health infrastructure,” it said.
The gateway would support the integration of health information from multiple sources into clinical information systems, giving clinicians access to more comprehensive patient information whenever needed. Meanwhile, the public would be able to access additional and more detailed health information through their My Health Record.
Information that could be exchanged or accessed includes vaccinations and aged care data.
The technology would be based on modern web services and standards for health information exchange and clinical terminologies — like Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources — allowing the gateway to interoperate with other health information exchange technologies, such as those already implemented by state and territory health departments.
Deloitte partner Ben Wylie said the organisation was looking forward to ‘helping the ADHA to deliver contemporary digital services that enhance Australians’ access to health products and services’.
The contract was awarded following a competitive tender process.
The ADHA’s modernisation program, announced in November, aims to deliver three key outcomes, including:
- A secure, sustainable digital infrastructure with improved ability to innovate and expand future capabilities and services nationally,
- Digital health needs for all users are further progressed through a modern, future-proofed seamless digital platform,
- The benefits of digital health technologies and services supported by the national infrastructure are realised for consumers and clinicians, leading to improved health and wellbeing for Australians.
Last week the agency revealed it was implementing new technology that would allow healthcare provider organisations to update key information from one place.