My Health Record – continuation and expansion

This measure supports the continued and improved operation of the My Health Record system, which allows individuals to access and control their own medical history and treatments – such as vaccinations. This follows unanimous support at COAG for a national rollout of My Health Record with every Australian able to have a record, unless they prefer not to.

Page last updated: 09 May 2017

PDF version: My Health Record – continuation and expansion (PDF 124 KB)

Why is this important?

A transition to opt-out participation for My Health Record will bring forward benefits many years sooner than the current opt in arrangements. Opt-out is the fastest way to realise the significant health and economic benefits of My Health Record for all Australians including through avoided hospital admissions, fewer adverse drug events, reduced duplication of tests, better coordination of care for people seeing multiple healthcare providers, and better informed treatment decisions.

Opt-out participation is supported by an independent evaluation of two opt-out trails undertaken in Northern Queensland and Nepean Blue Mountains Primary Health Network areas. The evaluation showed a high level of support for automatic creation of My Health Records by both healthcare providers and individuals. Across the two opt-out trial areas, the opt-out rate was just 1.9 per cent.

This measure allows the Australian Digital Health Agency to implement plans that will increase efficiency and sustainability and reduce the ongoing operational costs of the system in the longer term through the transition of Department of Human Services’ support functions to the Agency, the re-tender of the national infrastructure operator and delivery of a new, more flexible platform.

The system is a key plank of health infrastructure and connects key parts of the health system such as general practices, pharmacies, private and public hospitals, specialists and allied health professionals.

My Health Record Registration processes for healthcare provider organisations will be online and fully automated by May 2018, which will reduce the processing time from weeks to hours. This will replace the current time-consuming, paper-based registration processes and will cost less than supporting the existing system.

Who will benefit?

My Health Record allows individuals to access and control their own medical history and treatments – such as vaccinations.

This measure positively impacts all Australians, especially people with chronic conditions, or living or travelling in regional, rural and remote Australia.

How much will this cost?

The Government will spend $374.2 million on My Health Record – continuation and expansion from 2017–18 to 2018–19, with a net fiscal impact of $68.7 million.

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