Major investment in digital health to improve patient care

Tasmanian Government Media Release

The Tasmanian Liberal Government is transforming the way we deliver patient care with a $150 million investment over the next four years to upgrade our digital health infrastructure.

The 2022-23 State Budget commitment forms part of a Digital Health Strategy and it is anticipated more than $475 million will be allocated to this project over the next 10 years as the strategy is further scoped and developed.

This investment will see the launch of a new state-wide fully integrated care platform that will enable our hospitals, GPs, community health, allied health, and other specialist providers to seamlessly communicate and share information with each other.

In the first four years of funding, we will procure and trial a new centralised and secure Electronic Medical Record system and launch a statewide patient record viewer that connects all public and private health and care providers. Critically, this will improve access to up-to-date clinical information across a range of healthcare settings. 

We will also upgrade existing virtual care technologies – including telehealth – to enable more patients to receive care in their home or in their community, streamline the referral and appointment process for patients, and enhance clinical decision-making through access to advanced data and analytics.

This digital transformation will deliver a range of benefits for patients, including access to convenient healthcare in local communities, improved communications about appointments, reduced waiting time for services, and less duplication of care and forms.

It will also prevent unnecessary hospital visits, helping to keep people out of hospital when they don’t need to be there.

Importantly, upgrading our digital technologies will benefit our health professionals by providing them with the right data, in the right place, at the right time to enable them to make the best decisions on patient care.

In doing so, the changes will free up clinicians to spend more time on clinical activities and caring for patients, and less time on administrative tasks and chasing up paperwork.

In today’s rapidly changing health environment, we recognise that modern digital health infrastructure is just as important as bricks and mortar, particularly as Tasmania’s ageing population and increased rates of chronic disease are projected to drive increased demand for hospital care in the years ahead.

That’s why this investment represents a major step toward becoming the first Australian State with a fully integrated healthcare system that is ready to meet the challenges of the future.

By linking public and private health services in one digitally connected network, we will transform patient experience, improve patient care, and ensure greater equity in health outcomes across Tasmania’s dispersed population.