National roadmap to drive adoption of healthcare identifiers

Tuesday, 02 July, 2024

National roadmap to drive adoption of healthcare identifiers

The Australian Digital Health Agency (ADHA), in partnership with the Department of Health and Aged Care (DoHAC) and Services Australia, has published a strategic plan to drive uptake of Healthcare Identifiers Service (HI Service).

Healthcare identifiers are unique numbers used to identify individuals and are used by healthcare providers and healthcare organisations to connect the right information with the right person at the point of care.

ADHA’s Chief Digital Officer, Peter O’Halloran, said the National Healthcare Identifiers Roadmap 2023–2028 outlines a vision to enable a connected and interoperable health system where every person, healthcare provider and organisation can be accurately and quickly identified.

“Healthcare identifiers are the linchpin for safe, secure and seamless information sharing across the nation’s healthcare system in near real time. They are central to the evolution of digital health and will empower Australian healthcare consumers to have continuous care across all healthcare facilities in every corner of Australia,” O’Halloran said.

DoHAC’s Assistant Secretary of the Digital Health Branch, Simon Cleverley, said the roadmap is the result of close collaboration with the states and territories and key delivery partners to develop the foundations of a more connected health system and better health outcomes for Australia.

“Increased adoption of the national healthcare identifiers will mean Australians will avoid having to retell their story as they move across the health system. Access to information in real time will also support healthcare providers to make well-informed clinical decisions and care plans,” Cleverley said.

“The Healthcare Identifiers Roadmap follows the release of the Australian Government’s Digital Health Blueprint and Action Plan 2023–2033 and other key digital health strategies and plans and furthers the commitment to leverage national infrastructure.

Stuart Turnbull, General Manager of the Health Programs Division at Services Australia, said, “Services Australia has a long history of developing systems in support of Australia’s healthcare delivery. As the HI Service operator, we look forward to working with our colleagues and the broader healthcare industry in this initiative, which will promote a modernised, better connected healthcare system.”

The HI Roadmap highlights activities to drive wider uptake of the HI Service to improve quality and consistency in the identification of individuals, providers and healthcare organisations. These include: improving the quality and accuracy of the service and associated data; enhancing the functionality and usability of the service; increasing the awareness and adoption of the service across the health sector; enabling innovation and futureproofing the service.

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