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    ron batagol

    The concept of electronic health records is great and if properly set up and managed will revolutionise medical care especially in emergency situations or treatment in away-from-home locations etc. One only has to work in institutions which have scanned medical records to get the “flavour” of the vast potential of this such a programme.

    Unfortunately, the achilles heel of what has been proposed goes to the very heart of the PHECR concept, as indentified in the draft when it says:” While consumer control is an important feature of the PCEHR, it may compromise care if consumers are too focused on protecting their privacy and fail to share important clinical information”.

    I would go even further and, firstly dispute the phrase “important feature” and also say that in fact it beggars belief that it has been decided that we can produce a reliable National e-Health PCEHR programme by allowing the consumer to “cherry-pick” which medication records can be excluded from the PCEHR record- never mind that some people with sensitive conditions — such as mental illness, sexually-transmitted diseases, HIV or epilepsy — may choose to omit clinical information considered medically necessary to ensure safe patient care.

    (Think significant, potenially life-threatening interactions between warfarin and some antiretrovirals or warfarin and metronidazole which may be missed because vital medical information is withheld by the consumer!)

    Furthermore, it has yet to be decided if it will be clear to other health professionals that clinical information has not been included!

    Am I being overly cynical? – moi never! –

    Just pointing out the bleeding obvious to anyone who has a modicum of understanding about drug management issues and how they relate to important proposed or existing public health initiatives, which include nonsensical and dangerous caveats dreamed up by pollies and their various “expert health consultants” who don’t seem to comprehend the health dangers that may arise from consumers selectively withholding important clinical information!!! (BTW yes I know we don’t get all that now, but I thought this system was aimed at providing vital information electonically when it is needed!)


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