The Minister of Health has requested an independent report on the benefits of a single electronic health record in New Zealand.
There are five key findings in the report.
- Quality and productivity benefits are available by rationalising the systems used by secondary care facilities (eg, hospitals).
- Creating a ‘single’ electronic health record that physically consolidates health information in one place will improve decision support and care coordination especially for complex patients with multiple long-term conditions.
- Primary care needs to be connected real-time with the ‘single’ electronic health record.
- Implement closed loop medicine management, as this is the area that offers the highest benefits in terms of patient safety and quality.
- Develop consumer portal access to improve the ability to serve up information from a physical repository in real-time, through digital channels to consumers. Consumer engagement around their health and wellness is key to implementing a preventive or primary care-led strategy.
The Minister referred to this report during the Health Informatics New Zealand conference in Christchurch on 20 October 2015, where he announced a new health IT programme for 2015-2020.