Updated on 30 July 2013
Dr Niger Miller, chief medical officer, Canterbury District Health Board, and a member of New Zealand's National Health IT Board, has been involved in the implementation of IT projects in the healthcare sector. Elaborating on shared healthcare information plan of New Zealand, he says, "Availability of individual's clinical information, such as laboratory results, medications and other clinical documents, allows clinicians to make the best treatment decisions and the information can be shared among community clinics and hospitals. The Health IT Board is working towards creating an environment where clinical data is stored securely, can be viewed by health professionals and in a case where a patient requires special care or there is a switch of doctors, their information is made available and shared between health professionals and with the individuals themselves."
In order to develop a well-knit healthcare IT infrastructure that delivers hassle free service to 4.4 million New Zealand population, the strategists are calling for a collaboration and coordination among innovators, entrepreneurs, clinicians and healthcare delivery companies to join hands and implement IT infrastructure, technologies, framework, architectures for an integrated approach. New Zealand has initiated alignment of the new IT-enabled healthcare infrastructure with the existing structure at community level and it will be evaluated before deploying it at a larger scale. To start with, the National Health Board will implement the system at District Health Boards, enabling information to be shared between community and hospital health services, and then, gradually, the network would grow to connect all the hospitals of the country.
"New Zealand has huge IT implementation as there is a vision of creating electronic health record and unique patient record. This is has to be implemented at a lower cost and a lower risk model," said Mr Mark Capill, regional manager Asia, Orion Health, IT solution provider in health domain.