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Last updated 03 April 2016

My Health Record News Issue 1 February 2016

Published 02 March 2016


Below is the text only version of the My Health Record News digital bulletin.

Issue 1 - February 2016


Welcome to the first digital bulletin for My Health Record, bringing you the latest news on the relaunch of My Health Record (originally called the Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record).

What is My Health Record?

My Health Record commenced on 1 July 2012. Like many similar initiatives around the world, it is a secure, online summary of an individual’s health information. It can be viewed by treating healthcare providers, including doctors, nurses and pharmacists across Australia.

My Health Record gives you access to information about a patient’s health which you may not otherwise have been able to see. To access this information you don’t need to copy it into your system or do any extra work. The information you can access through My Health Record is outlined below:
  • Shared Health Summary - A summary, authored by the treating doctor, of an individual’s health status including adverse reactions, medicines, medical history and immunisations
  • Hospital Discharge Summaries - A record of an individual’s hospital stay and any follow up treatment required
  • Diagnostic imaging reports - Such as ultrasounds or x-ray results (Currently Diagnostic Imaging reports are being updated by Northern Territory)
  • Prescriptions and dispense information - Such as dosages and frequency
  • Event Summaries - Clinical summaries of health events entered by the healthcare provider who was involved in the patient’s care to inform other treating healthcare providers
  • Specialist letters - Referral letters and reports from one treating healthcare provider to another

Through their clinical information systems, GPs can:

  • View hospital discharge summaries
  • View specialist letters
  • View and add medications
  • View an Event Summary contributed by another GP
  • Add a Shared Health Summary
  • Add an Event Summary

My Health Record:

  • The new name of the national digital health record system

Through their patient administration systems, hospitals can:

  • View medications
  • View Shared Health Summaries
  • View and create specialist letters
  • View Event Summaries
  • Add hospital discharge summaries

Individuals can:

  • View their Shared Health Summary and other health documents in their record
  • View Medicare or PBS claims
  • Add important information on allergies
  • Add emergency contact details
  • Add other medication they are taking
  • Add an Advance Care plan
  • Set access controls

My Health Record is growing!

  • Over 2.5 Million people have a record
  • 1 New record created every minute (on average 2015)
  • An extra 1 Million to get a My Health Record during participation trials
  • Over 2.9 Million Prescription and Dispense records
  • 8,010 Healthcare providers registered to use the system
  • Over 337,000 Clinical Document Uploads
  • Including 260,000 hospital discharge summaries

Why My Health Record is important.

Patient care

  • My Health Record facilitates the sharing of clinical and treatment information between healthcare providers as well as with individuals
  • It is ethical practice to ensure that the information you create about your patients is available and accessible by other healthcare providers involved in their care
  • As more information is contributed by different healthcare providers and as more patients sign up for a My Health Record, we will reach a tipping point where Australia’s health system becomes better connected
  • My Health Record helps deliver healthcare more efficiently and effectively by minimising unnecessary repeat tests, managing medication better and improving ontinuity of care


  • My Health Record allows healthcare providers to access patient information quickly and easily
  • In a medical emergency, hospitals can get access to a patient’s record to provide the best possible care quickly, including information they may not have otherwise had access to


  • The My Health Record system is a secure source of key clinical information

What’s new!

Overview: Improvements based on the review

In December 2013 an independent review of the system, titled ‘Review of the Personally Controlled Electronic Health Record’, was finalised. It found overwhelming support for a national digital health record system and made a number of recommendations to improve uptake and use. The 2015–16 Budget announcement is the Government’s response to the review. It includes:
  • Changing the name from PCEHR to My Health Record
  • Improving the usability of the system and increasing the clinical content in the records
  • Reviewing existing incentives to encourage use of the system by general practitioners
  • Refreshing training materials and training delivery for healthcare providers on how to use the system
  • Trialling new participation arrangements for individuals, including an opt-out system to inform future strategies for bringing forward the benefits of My Health Record nationally (see ‘Another million Australians to have a record!’ to the right)
  • Establishing a new agency (The Australian Digital Health Agency) as the single accountable organisation for digital health in Australia. This Agency is planned to be operational from 1 July 2016. Governance arrangements will reflect the key stakeholders and beneficiaries of the system

System: Making My Health Record easier to use

The My Health Record system is continuously improving to include more information and become easier to use.

Today’s My Health Record system includes:
  • Prescription and dispense documents
  • Consumer and Provider portal and system improvements
  • Specialist letters
  • Inclusion of Medicare data (MBS, PBS, RPBS, AODR)
  • Hospital Discharge Summary capability
  • Assisted registration for individuals
  • Healthcare provider access in an emergency situation
  • Pathology report capability
  • Diagnostic Imaging report capability
  • Security Improvements

The General Practice contribution

More patients will be able to share their health information through the My Health Record system in coming months, as general practices prepare to meet new ePIP eligibility requirements.

From May this year general practices will need to contribute about five Shared Health Summaries per GP per quarter, to maintain eligibility for the incentive payment.

The key contribution required from general practices is the shared health summary information for their patients. This will provide valuable clinical information for individuals and other healthcare providers involved in treating them.

New online and face-to-face training will help general practices and GPs become familiar with and confident to use today’s My Health Record system.

Formal, written notification to general practices of the new requirements will occur in March.

Trials: Another million Australians to have a record!

In mid 2016, around one million people living in North Queensland and the Nepean Blue Mountains of New South Wales region will have a My Health Record created (unless they choose not to).

Residents of these locations will be informed by letter that a My Health Record will be created for them, and that they have to notify the System Operator by 27th May 2016 if they don’t want one.

By creating digital health records for an entire geographical area, the trials will be an opportunity to understand the benefits and key considerations associated with a system of connected healthcare.

Training: How do I learn more?

New training will be available on the website from February 2016 for clinical and nonclinical staff including general practices, community pharmacies, residential aged care facilities, medical specialists, allied health, and hospitals.

Face-to-face training will be available in trial areas for General Practice, Pharmacies and Hospitals. It will also be available on demand for general practices outside trial areas.

Legislative changes: What they mean for you

Changes to the My Health Record legislative framework were made in November 2015 through the Health Legislation Amendment (eHealth) Act 2015.

These changes are designed to make it easier for you to connect to and use the system.
They are also there to protect individuals against misuse of their information.
What you need to know:
  1. Participation agreements for My Health Record will be abolished – these are the contracts you enter into with the System Operator when you register to use the system. From 1 March 2016 you will no longer need to complete these because they will be included in the My Health Record legislation. This will make the connection process quicker and easier.
  2. Penalties are changing – to protect the interests of individuals, there will be stronger sanctions against misuse of the system. These penalties won’t apply to you if you accidentally or inadvertently access an individual’s My Health Record. These won’t affect you if you are practicing in good faith.
  3. You won’t be required to store assisted registration application forms from early 2016 – you no longer need to store signed application forms or submit them to the System Operator. It is up to you to decide how to capture consent going forward.
We are currently creating materials that explain these changes in more detail and provide guidance on what they mean for the way you use the My Health Record system.

Suggestions please!

We want to know what you’d like to hear about in future editions of this digital bulletin.

To provide suggestions for topics or feedback, email the MyHealthRecord inbox.

For more information and assistance on My Health Record

Healthcare providers
Call 1800 723 471 (select option 2)

Individuals (healthcare recipients)
Call 1800 723 471 (select option 1)

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Last updated 03 April 2016