Kooweerup health service going digital

Kooweerup Regional Healthcare Service's Aileen Thoms with Leanne Brown, Naomi Rendall and Brian Harlow. 319109 Photo: SHELBY BROOKS/FILE

By Matthew Sims

The State Government is reducing paperwork for doctors and nurses to deliver better and faster care with the modernisation of medical records now underway in Gippsland.

As part of the Gippsland Health Alliance, Kooweerup Regional Health Service will be introducing the Altera Sunrise digital system to its processes, along with Gippsland Southern Health Service, Omeo District Health, Orbost Regional Health, South Gippsland Hospital and the Yarram and District Health Service.

Health Minister Mary-Anne Thomas said $12 million in funding will be invested over the next four years to support Gippsland health services to upgrade their systems and deliver safer and more patient-centred care for the region.

“Our state’s digital health roadmap is a blueprint for building a health system that can deliver world-class care for all Victorians no matter where they live in the state,” she said.

Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) streamline tasks, reduce the manual writing of reports and prescriptions, and give healthcare workers easy and fast access to vital patient information, improving care coordination and increasing efficiency and productivity.

The State Government’s Digital Health Roadmap and its Health 2040: Advancing Health, Access, and Care plan prioritise the replacement of paper-based records at all Victorian public health services.

Digitisation removes the risk of staff misinterpreting poorly written or deteriorating physical records while also providing a place for patient information to be securely stored.

Kooweerup Regional Health Service chief executive Noni Bourke said the new digital system will streamline the service’s overall operations.

“Kooweerup Regional Health Service welcomes the opportunity to move from a paper based system to a contemporary electronic medical record providing efficiencies for staff and supporting our ongoing provision of safe high quality care,” she said.

Eastern Victoria MP Harriet Shing said the new digital system will create a more productive health system in the South East.

“Modernising these medical record systems ensures Gippsland will benefit from a safer and more efficient system when they are getting care,” she said.