Western Region Health Centre and Bendigo Community Health Services Benefit from Multi-Million Dollar Victorian HealthSMART Rollout
Melbourne, Australia – February 20, 2008 – InterSystems today announced that Western Region Health Centre in Melbourne and Bendigo Community Health Services are improving the delivery of healthcare services through the implementation of InterSystems TrakCare™, a Web-based healthcare information system developed in Australia.
Western Region Health Centre – servicing the inner and outer western suburbs of Melbourne – and Bendigo Community Health Services are the first Community Health agencies to implement TrakCare under the Victorian government’s $360 million HealthSMART program.
A further 10 Victorian agencies are currently implementing TrakCare with go-lives scheduled between now and the end of 2008. Another 12 agencies have entered into an expression of interest stage which should see them implement TrakCare by the end of 2009.
Benefits to agencies which have implemented TrakCare include efficiency gains, improved client experience and better resource allocation to meet current and future community health needs. Expected benefits include improved healthcare outcomes through preventative health initiatives and information sharing throughout the Victorian health system.
“We realised those business benefits and benefits for clients very early on,” said Clare Amies, CEO of Western Region Health Centre, which has 13 different sites around inner and outer Melbourne.
As an example, says Amies, community healthcare clients now only need to register once for most services. These include general practice, mental health, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and drug and alcohol services, as well as services for children, the aged, the homeless, new arrivals and refugees, and Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islanders.
Previously, people were required to register at each site where they presented for different services, repeating the entry of information into different systems and databases. Entering data once is more efficient and improves the client experience. Clients’ records are now captured within a single electronic medical record.
“TrakCare is already leading to efficiency gains, with improved coordination of resources such as language interpreters,” says Amies. “We use a large number of interpreters, but using their time efficiently has been difficult. We had a manual system but there were lots of phone calls involved. Without a central repository of information, it was difficult to coordinate bookings for interpreters with the bookings of clients requiring particular language services.”
TrakCare is also helping the agency better allocate its resources to meet evolving community healthcare needs.
“To use public health dollars as effectively as possible, we need to understand what services we are providing to whom,” says Amies. “If we can be clear about why people come to see us, we can improve the services we provide. TrakCare has the ability to create reports about referrals within and outside our organisation, to see if there are gaps – where we can’t refer people, where the waitlists are long, for example – and identify other organisations with which we need to be working.”
“We can capture information we couldn’t before, and we can capture it across the whole organisation, and do it by location or service provided. That information means we can better focus resources where they are needed. We have an ageing population, however we are seeing more demand for services for children. In the past the evidence for this was anecdotal. Now, with TrakCare, we will be able to have good hard evidence about why we need to increase our services, in paediatrics, for example.”
While the current focus is on better capturing information and sharing it within the organisation to improve the efficiency and quality of healthcare services, Amies can see even more benefits with improved healthcare outcomes through preventative health initiatives and as information is shared throughout the Victorian health system.
“Our focus is more about preventative health, about intervening early in people’s diseases,” says Amies. “For example, when new people present with diabetes there is an opportunity with TrakCare to link them in with a range of services and coordinate their care to help them manage the disease – to increase quality of life and decrease the burden on the health system.
“The future of health care for the local community is about being able to share information between healthcare providers with client consent,” says Amies. “To do this currently, the information has to be downloaded and transferred through secure messaging. In the future this data-sharing could be done automatically, with client consent, using service coordination templates built into TrakCare. If one of our dieticians creates a plan for a client with diabetes, for example, the plan could automatically be sent with client permission to their general practitioner.”
InterSystems Corporation is a global software product company with headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and offices in 22 countries. InterSystems provides innovative products that enable fast development, deployment, and integration of enterprise-class applications. InterSystems TrakCare™ is an advanced patient-centric healthcare information system that is installed in leading hospitals in 25 countries. InterSystems CACHÉ® is a high performance object database that makes applications faster and more scalable. InterSystems Ensemble® is a rapid integration platform that enriches applications with new functionality, and makes them connectable. InterSystems HealthShare™ is a platform that leverages existing healthcare applications to rapidly create regional or national electronic health records. For more information, visit InterSystems.com.
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