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When GPs began using the My Health Record system, they identified some usability issues within their vendor software that were impacting workflow, and some of the digital health features of their software were not as intuitive as originally hoped.

Clinical Usability Programme (CUP)

The Clinical Usability Programme (CUP) develops recommendations on how current and future general practice software vendors implementing the Agency’s specifications within their products might improve the usability of digital health functionality. CUP recommendations have been developed in close consultation with general practice users and clinical stakeholder groups. The recommendations are primarily aimed at GP software vendors, but can be used by software developers more broadly where they think their users will benefit.

Version 1.0 of the usability recommendations (Release 1) were issued in November 2013, with a subsequent updated version 1.1 (Release 2) issued in May 2014. These releases resolved the GP usability concerns that had been raised in relation to displaying My Health Record information on the screen, providing clear wording around clinician responsibilities for uploading Shared Health Summaries, and providing clear indication whether the patient has an active My Health Record.

In December 2015, version 1.2 of the usability recommendations (Release 3) were made available, giving vendors guidance on how to enhance their software through the use of prompts and reminders, as well as allowing GP users to customise and configure their My Health Record system interactions.

Version 1.3 of the usability recommendations (Release 4a) were issued in January 2016. This release gives vendors guidance on recording adverse reactions, specifically around the use of clinical terminology for recording a reaction type. Minor amendments and new recommendations were also included to make the recommendations clearer and easier to understand. An additional set of mock-ups have been developed to provide a visual representation of the CUP guidelines around the recording of adverse reactions.

Version 1.4 is now available. This release gives vendors guidance on assisted data imports, specifically to improve and better standardise the method of transferring discrete information from clinical documents to local records. The guidelines are limited to transfer of medicines and adverse reactions information as prioritised by the Clinical Usability Programme.  This scope may be expanded in the future once it is determined how best to incorporate other clinical document content into local records.

Click on the following links for a visual representation of the CUP recommendations:

A number of software vendors are working on making usability enhancements to their software. Clinicians can check whether their software vendor has incorporated usability recommendations. Alternatively, contact your software vendor to find out how and when they plan to incorporate usability recommendations into their product.

Please provide usability feedback by submitting the usability improvements form.