THE region’s health care groups will begin the transition from paper-based medical records to digital records.
The Wimmera Health Care Group is the first in the region to digitised its medical records.
Chief executive Catherine Morley said the advancement had followed months of preparation to the organisation’s systems and team.
She said the transition would be the biggest change in management and technology in decades.
“This project is huge and we are very pleased it has reached this stage and we are grateful for a lot of hard work put in by a lot of people,” she said.
Ms Morley said having digital-based medical records would improve the efficiency of the Wimmera Health Care Group.
“Having a digital medical record will mean more efficient and effective care for patients and clients and faster access to medical records for the nursing and medical teams,” she said.
“A lot less time will be spent sourcing paper records and information can be shared between health organisations within the region to improve patient treatment and outcomes.”
Ms Morley said the Department of Health and Human Services had offered great support in funding the project.
“The funding for this project shows a strong commitment to regional and rural healthcare and a lot of recognition for the high level of health care provided in regions such as the Wimmera and southern Mallee,” she said.
East Grampians Health Service chief executive Nick Bush said the organisation will follow the Wimmera Health Care Group on December 12.
He said in preparation of the change the staff were undergoing training to ensure a steady changeover.
Mr Bush said digital medical records would provided better outcomes for its patients.
“When we refer patients to Ballarat they will have access to the patient’s digital files, which reduces the amount of tests needed to be duplicated and doctor’s notes can be emailed to provide better results,” he said.
West Wimmera Health Services is in the development stage with plans to transition to digital records on January 30.
Service primary and preventive health executive director Kaye Borgelt said the organisation was working through its processes and background details to ensure a seamless transition come January.
She said digitising medical records would be a great advancement in patient care.
“It would provide comprehensive records that can be accessed in a timely manners across all sites,” she said.