Evaluation of the GP Super Clinics Program 2007-2008

6.6 Effective Use of Information Technology

Page last updated: 2012

The seven GP Super Clinics used electronic health record products for access by all clinicians, subject to agreed permission levels. All seven GP Super Clinics were consistent in their approach to compliance with privacy regulations for shared electronic health records. Most had privacy policies and had provided staff training in confidentiality. These policies were usually aligned with requirements under the accreditation process. The majority of GP Super Clinics had permission levels for discipline type in relation to sharing of information. These were most commonly applied for psychologists and/or social workers.

All GP Super Clinics had some type of consent form for patients for sharing of records: these mostly included opportunities for exclusion of sharing. The majority of patients interviewed indicated the use of electronic health records as positive. None of the patients expressed concern about sharing of records. Rather, the majority perceived that it was valuable when they saw another clinician in the practice that access to their history was available.

Sometimes I see another doctor. My records are all on the computer so I don’t have to repeat everything about me – they can just access it.

Patient - Interview

None of the GP Super Clinics had implemented systems for sharing of electronic health records with external health care providers. However, two had indicated that plans were in place to trial an approach of shared electronic records with an external provider, in both instances with an aged care facility. The GP Super Clinic Directors indicated that the planning and processes required for this to occur were time-consuming to ensure both accuracy in shared information and compliance with privacy regulations.