Here’s a real shock: a professional health journal has actually found something positive to say about the PCEHR!
According to Pharmacy News, “ehealth record trials show there will be some real practical advantages for pharmacists”, as the national electronic record is bedded down and information begins to flow.
How can this be? Have they too given up reading Karen Dearne’s uniquely destructive, somewhat fiction-oriented sub-set of journalism which I and some of my colleagues have dubbed “Dearne-alism”?
I know it’s mind-boggling, but Pharmacy News seems to have interviewed people who have actually used the PCEHR, rather than those people who claim it can’t be used; cost half a billion dollars more than the government thinks it actually spent; doesn’t do what it was never supposed to do; will somehow carry an inferior brand of pathology report, etc., etc.
Pharmacy News, for instance, spoke to Linda Dew, manager of Soul Pattinson’s Pharmacy at Geelong, which participated in the Medview trial.
She told them, “We had one gentleman, a regular patient, come in to the pharmacy and he swore black and blue that a doctor he had seen at the hospital a few days ago had changed his medication. We were able to look up his records from the hospital on the spot, and show him immediately that the script at the hospital was the same as the one he had from his GP and that’s what we were filling.
“It was really reassuring for him and it saved us a lot of chasing up.”
According to Ms Dew, pharmacists [SHOCK, HORROR] actually asked every new patient whether they would like to sign up to the PCEHR, and, would you believe it, only one refused. He just happened to be … a doctor.
The trial seems to have been embraced by Geelong pharmacists, and while some reported the sign-up rate was lower – at around 50-50 – at Barwon Heads, pharmacist Bernard Napthine reported that people he talked to about enrolling didn’t find the concept at all threatening. He was quite surprised by the level of acceptance, and puts it down to the fact that “”Most people had assumed that their records from the pharmacy were already accessible by their GP or at the hospital”.
According to Napthine, “These days people assume that everyone’s data is connected and available across different agencies.” It won’t be, of course. Not without the PCEHR.