Skip to content

Digital Health; The PHN Highlights Innovation and Impact

With a vision for Healthy People and Healthy Communities, Hunter New England and Central Coast Primary Health Network (HNECC PHN) developed its Digital Health Strategy in 2021 to deliver improved health outcomes through strong digital health foundations that lead to accessible, equitable, safe, effective and sustainable digitally-enabled models of care. The objectives of the strategy are to:

  • Explore how digital health technology can be utilised across primary health care to deliver better health outcomes for our communities.
  • Focus on connecting care through digital health and integrating the health system.
  • Support and influence enhancements in the use of digital health across all elements of primary care in the HNECC region.

We are pleased to share some of our stories of Innovation and Impact from the last 12 months.

Since the PHNs inception in 2015, Innovation has sat at the heart of our work. Our Digital Health Strategy 2021-2024, continues the driving desire for meaningful and sustainable change in primary healthcare that benefits all stakeholders and consumers with:

  • Focus on the growth of digital literacy and digital health maturity across primary healthcare and highlighting the integration elements required with partners in the acute sector.
  • Tangible development of stakeholder capability for digital health change for all primary health care stakeholders and internal PHN staff to efficiently support the local community’s health.
  • The agreement that digital health investment targets the areas of need to effectively deliver the desired outcomes.
Key Area Results
Innovation in Action #Health-e Together Digital Care The SeNT eReferral system, launched in 2016 as a partnership between HNECC PHN and Hunter New England Local Health District, has delivered over 150,000 eReferrals to more than 450 local public and private health services, enhancing security, access to healthcare and reducing errors, administrative time and costs in the health system.
The introduction of the Health-e Together Digital Care Survey in 2022 has generated essential data on the Digital Health Maturity levels in 309 primary healthcare organisations including General Practice, Aboriginal Medical Services, Allied Health and Aged Care.
The PHN’s Hunter New England Community HealthPathways team partnered with eHealth NSW to pilot the implementation of SafeScript NSW, which is now live across NSW for prescribers and pharmacists to access real-time information about their patient’s prescription history for certain high-risk medicines.
To support change at different levels of digital maturity, the PHN has invested in the online Health-e Together Digital Care Toolbox with various resources to support healthcare providers with digital health implementation.
Supporting our healthcare providers and consumers #Health-e Together Digital Care The Toolbox includes video case studies of champion General Practice, Allied Health, Aged Care and Specialist organisations demonstrating digital health use in practice.
In 2022, the PHN distributed $1 million in Health-e Together Digital Care grants to General Practices, Allied Health Practitioners and those supporting Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACF) to enable or improve digital health capability. The funding supported the implementation of digital health foundations, for example, purchasing telehealth video equipment.
In 2022, a further 131 grants were tendered for RACF telehealth bundles to digitally-enable access to healthcare for aged care residents. The bundle included a specially developed telehealth trolley worth $5000.
The establishment of the Digital Health Advisory Panel in 2022, comprising PHN staff, clinicians (general practice and allied health) and consumers, to ensure a strategic and consistent approach to digital health implementation across the PHN region.
The PHN has facilitated over 30 digital health webinars and education sessions to increase internal (PHN staff) and external (healthcare provider) digital health and data literacy, promote cybersecurity awareness and appropriate foundational digital health tools to improve health outcomes and service delivery.
All PHN Commissioned Service contracts now include digital health requirements.
Digital Health Successes #layingthefoundations My Health Record is accessible in over 95% of General Practices and community pharmacies, and 60% of private specialist practices are now connected in the HNECC PHN region.
From 2021-2023, the PHN worked with primary healthcare organisations to upgrade and conform to the new national security standards (NASH SHA-2). Over 860 organisations upgraded the NASH digital certificate to maintain access to foundational systems, including My Health Record, ePrescribing, Secure Messaging and SeNT eReferral.
Provider Connect Australia (PCA) kicked off in 2022 with an extensive awareness and education campaign, with HNECC PHN achieving the KPI for PCA pilot registrations and continuing support for this work.
The PHN continues the work to promote the adoption and use of ePrescriptions and eRequesting of pathology and imaging.
Towards a digital future #Health-e Together Digital Care Increasing provider digital and data literacy and maturity across primary healthcare.
Critical work on cyber-security and disaster recovery knowledge and practice to address critical vulnerabilities.
Promoting the meaningful use of foundational digital health systems, including My Health Record, PCA, ePrescribing, eRequesting Path and DI and the use of telehealth video.
Supporting the uptake towards standards-based practice management systems for improved security, interoperability, business efficiency, and consumer health outcomes.

Explore more news like this:

More about:

Digital health

For audiences:

Health Professionals

Keep up to date with the latest.

Subscribe to our mailing list to get all the latest news updates delivered to your inbox.

Related News

December 08 2023

Digital Health Assessment reveals solid foundations for improvements in digital maturity.

The Hunter New England and Central Coast Primary Health Network (HNECC PHN) has completed a comprehensive digital health maturity assessment for more than 300 health facilities revealing a higher score of digital maturity across the HNECC region in comparison to other PHN regions.

Learn more about Digital Health Assessment reveals solid foundations for improvements in digital maturity.