Secure Message exchange volumes growing at 15% per month
The collaboration between Global Health and Telstra Health to enable interoperability of clinical documents exchanged between subscribers of Global Health’s ReferralNet Secure Message Delivery (SMD) platform and Telstra Health’s Argus Connect SMD platform is gaining significant momentum across Victoria.
Interoperability volumes are increasing at an average of 15% per month since the initial cohort of early adopters in Western Victoria commenced in December 2017.
Most healthcare professionals today are using secure messaging platforms which are not compatible with one another unless they conform to a strict set of rules for identification and a limited set of message (document) structures.
These pre-requisites are not generally available in the wide variety of healthcare software used across General Practice, Allied Health, Specialists, Pathology, Radiology, Pharmacies, Aged Care, and the acute (hospital) sector.
Recognising this blocker to the digital flow of patient data across healthcare providers, the Global Health and Telstra Health teams have implemented a much wider range of commonly used documents covering the transfer of care. This includes discharge summaries, referrals, progress notes, and diagnostic reports from pathology and radiology providers, using the older but much more widely-used document formats based on international standards (HL7v2.3).
Each party also relied on the other party’s security and identity management infrastructure which out of practical necessity, is the most current and accurate directory of each party's subscriber list and associated Internet addresses. The combination of common document types and federated mutual trust has been a significant catalyst to the increased volume of secure messages.
In March, over 300 ReferralNet subscribers (provider organisations) received 995 documents from their colleagues that were Argus subscribers and sent 765 documents to their colleagues that were on the Argus platform. This covered 13 specialties and over a dozen different software products within the ReferralNet ecosystem.
No changes to clinical and practice management software products were required. Clinicians continued to use their existing software products and existing document templates thus avoiding the need for “change management”.
The benefits of this information-sharing breakthrough will be significant once adopted throughout the healthcare sector. Messages can be produced, encrypted, sent, logged, received, noted on one system, and acted upon in another with no fuss, fax machines, or post to send information.
Mathew Cherian, CEO of Global Health said: “For the increasing number of patients living with lifelong conditions such as diabetes, mental health issues, and cardio-vascular conditions, all of which require a variety of specialists and allied health specialists working as a team for their common patient, this sharing of data will enable significant improvements in patient outcomes and business productivity.
“Following 12 months of controlled rollout in Victoria to early adopters of secure message interoperability, the Company is implementing a national accredited Reseller network to accelerate the growth of our subscriber base, increase volumes and extend this interoperability to healthcare providers across all segments of healthcare in all states and territories.” Said Mr Cherian, Global Health.