Pathology Australia today has welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Health, Sussan Ley, regarding a change to the myHealth Record system trialing an opt-out rather than opt-in electronic health record.
The benefits of receiving, viewing and storing a patients test results in one place are significant for both the patient and their treating doctors, Pathology Australia says.
Its CEO, Liesel Wett, says this is a great step forward for consumers and a great step forward for treating doctors.
The changes, including the investment of $485 million, will enable patients with health conditions to share with any number of treating doctors their diagnosis and test results delivered by specialist pathologists, it says.
The changes could also help reduce unnecessary repeat or duplicate pathology tests.
Wett says pathology is an essential medical service necessary to ensure a high-quality health system.
“Some 70% of medical diagnoses are based on pathology testing and 100 per cent of cancer diagnoses use pathology testing,” she says.
“The private pathology sector has always supported an opt-out electronic health record and has been working with the government for some time to see the inclusion of pathology test results uploaded to the myHealth Record. We look forward to working with the new Australian Commission for eHealth when it is established.
“The changes announced today will enable greater communication between patients and their doctors based on the results of high-quality health care.”
Wett says Pathology Australia looks forward to being involved in the ongoing development of eHealth which will deliver more coordinated care for consumers and their treating doctors.
“Given the pathology sector’s use of technology and working relationship with government, this is a great win for patients and the health system,” she says.