Roundup: NZ Health Ministry replaces health system targets with latest indicators, Peninsula Health goes to cloud with Citrix and more briefs

NZ’s Health Ministry introduces health indicators for better care delivery

New Zealand has launched a new system that will hold its health system accountable and focus on areas of improvement.

The Health System Indicators replaces the National Health Targets which was retired in 2018 after over a decade of implementation. It was found that the previous health targets have led to “perverse” outcomes as some hospitals were only driven to meet them without actually providing services that the people needed or wanted.

Following consultations with clinicians, the Ministry of Health and the Health Quality and Safety Commission developed the framework to help the health system focus on areas of improvement. 

The health indicators will not be a performance metric of a public health service but a measure of “how well the health system is functioning as a cohesive unit,” said Health Minister Andrew Little in a speech delivered to the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners Conference 2021. 

Minister Little said the indicators will reflect the government’s top priorities in healthcare, including the improvement of child wellbeing, mental health and wellbeing through preventive measures and the creation of a strong and equitable public health system, better primary care and financially sustainable health system.

“These are indicators to monitor and strive for continuous improvement and will give us useful information, right down to a local level,” the minister said. “The health indicators will bring data and people together to improve safe and equitable care while also getting the best value for money from the health budget.”

The Health System Indicators, which are listed on the Health Ministry’s website, will be changed as needed. Presently, the national-level data for 10 indicators are accessible online, while the remaining two are still being developed. 

Results of the Health System Indicators will be published quarterly via an online dashboard. It will be pegged against the December 2019 quarter baseline. Results for the July-September 2021 period is set to be released in December. 

Peninsula Health taps Logicalis for remote work transition, telehealth service provision 

Peninsula Health, a public health service provider in Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, has engaged the services of UK-based IT service firm Logicalis to enforce remote work for staff and roll out telehealth services during the pandemic.

According to a media release, Logicalis installed a digital workplace solution that runs on Citrix Cloud. 

The infrastructure provides access to work resources; contextual security to keep corporate and personal information safe across devices and locations; and a shared environment to “streamline execution, enhance collaboration and ensure equitable access and sharing of information” for all employees regardless of their location.

“The feedback from our clinical staff has been that telehealth and virtual solutions can deliver as good and, in some cases, even better services for patients than a face-to-face consultation,” said Peninsula Health Operations Director Alison Watts.

“The solution itself has fundamentally changed people’s thinking about how hospitals can function. This is going to have a really significant impact on the way health services are delivered,” Sam Psathas, engagement manager at Logicalis, also commented.

Citrix claims to support over 400,000 organisations around the world. 

Healthsite adds Tyro’s online payment service to online booking system

Victoria-based health tech company Healthsite has partnered with digital payments provider Tyro to introduce a payment service to its online booking system.

According to a press release, the payments feature allows two online payment methods: prepayments and tokenisation. 

The booking system can accept the full amount for consultations before an online booking is submitted. It can also capture a patient’s credit card details and allocate a unique token that is used post consultation and for future visits to complete the transaction.

In either method, a partial or full refund can be made and sent directly to the patient via self-service portal Oracle. 

Additionally, Healthsite said clinics will need to have a Tyro e-commerce account to access the service, even if they are an existing Tyro customer.

Laverty Pathology connects test reports to My Health Record

Laverty Pathology, a subsidiary of Healius Pathology, has started delivering patient’s test results to the government’s My Health Record.

In a media release, the Australian Digital Health Agency said the pathology service provider’s sites across the ACT and NSW are now sending reports to the digital health record platform.

The Laverty Pathology centre at Port Macquarie Hospital, meanwhile, is set to do the same “later this year,” according to Matthew Brumby, its general manager. 

There are over 700 Laverty Pathology collection centres operating in NSW and the ACT. 

ADHA noted nearly 800,000 pathology test results viewed by consumers in June alone, rising four times over the same month last year.

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