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Southern DHB’s digital maturity assessment a “healthy exercise”

Wednesday, 11 September 2019  
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Picture: HIMSS Analytica global vice president John Daniels will be leading a workshop on the assessment process at Digital Health Week NZ 2019. editor Rebecca McBeth


Southern District Health Board has completed its digital maturity assessment and is working on an action plan to fill gaps highlighted by the process.


Southern was chosen by the Ministry last year to pilot three HIMSS Analytics maturity assessments: the electronic medical record adoption model (EMRAM), outpatient model EMRAM (O-EMRAM) and the continuity-of-care maturity model (CCMM). They later decided to add the infrastructure adoption model (INFRAM) assessment.


The DHB received an EMRAM score of 0.0765, an O-EMRAM of 1.163 and an INFRAM score of 4.


The output of the CCMM assessment was some high-level action plans around different care settings.


Southern DHB executive director people, culture and technology Mike Collins says the assessments were a positive thing and a healthy exercise.


“It provides a common language and strengthens conversations around the future of healthcare and digital,” he says.


The DHB received an EMRAM score of 5.35 in early 2016.


Collins says the DHB’s score has dropped significantly because both the questions asked and scoring criteria have changed significantly since the last assessment.


For an organisation to move past a level they have to be 100 per cent compliant. Therefore, while Southern has completed some of the requirements of all seven levels of EMRAM, it cannot pass level one until all of those requirements are completed.


Collins is hopeful of lifting the DHB’s score quite rapidly, having identified exactly what needs to be done.


“It’s a benchmark for everyone to work on and it’s linked into our digital strategy and action plan,” he says.


“When we design the blueprint for the digital hospital, this gives us a benchmark to aim towards for both the ambulatory and acute building.”


Southern DHB business solutions manager Jack Devereux says the assessments have helped the DHB identify gaps and work on actions “in order to move up the ladder”.


Future work involves electronic clinical documentation, secure messaging and a patient portal.


“Some is work already planned in the 2019/2020 capital plan and in some cases it’s longer term and will involve discussions with other stakeholders as to the next steps around this,” Devereux says.


He describes the CCMM assessment as a “challenging exercise” because it involved the whole Southern health system, such as PHOs and NGOs, delivering multiple layers of care.


“When talking about multiple entities, there’s no overarching governance model everyone buys into, so we have to work with some different strategies,” he says.


Collins says giving more community and residential care providers access to South Island-wide clinical portals HealthOne and Health Connect South will improve information sharing with these types of agencies.


A New Zealand glossary was developed with Southern DHB to ensure the assessments fit the New Zealand health environment.


All DHBs are now being offered the chance to have digital maturity assessment.


The Ministry and HIMSS are holding a workshop on 20 November during Digital Health Week NZ 2019 in Hamilton for those wanting to learn more about the assessment process.


Devereux is also presenting at Digital Health Week NZ 2019 about the learnings and opportunities from 2019 assessments.


If you would like to provide feedback on this news story please contact the editor Rebecca McBeth.


Read more on this topic:

Digital maturity assessments rolled out to all DHBs

Southern DHB kicks off digital maturity assessments

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