The new HSE eHealth Ireland website went live on 16th June.

You will find information about the ongoing work in relation to the delivery of eHealth on in addition to:
– Information about the eHealth Ireland Committee
– Details of the Clinical Information Officers Council
– Progress on the delivery of the IHI
– Progress on the eReferral programme
– Case Studies of what has been delivered in the last six months

This site has been developed by the Office of the Chief Information Officer within the HSE. The information provided within the content of the site marks a milestone for the creation of the eHealth Ireland capacity. The team have set specific targets and goals for delivery of eHealth and this site will be transparent about these targets and achievements.

The aim of the website is to put in place a common platform that will enable a unified understanding of the plans for implementing eHealth. Technology enablement plays a fundamental role in delivering better patient care outcomes, it acts as a catalyst that will, through enhanced clinical knowledge and timely access to the right knowledge and information help create a world class health care system for Ireland.

On the site you will find information on the following:
• Knowledge and Information Plan – a roadmap for Ireland for the next 5 years at a high level, the operating model for this delivery and the benefits map against care delivery areas
• Strategic Programmes – Individual Health Identifier, eReferral, Primary Care IT, Cancer IT, National Children’s Hospital, Electronic Health Record and the newly created Open Data for Health Programme.
• Clinical Engagement – Clinical Information Officers Council and details of how clinicians are engaged with the programme
• Case studies of successful eHealth projects in Ireland
• The eHealth Ireland Committee –members and terms of reference

Richard Corbridge, Chief Information Officer, HSE said

“the delivery of eHeatlh to Ireland means digital transformation. This evolvement will enable commonly shared capabilities and access to information throughout health and removes silos of information that exist today. It will ensure that excellence is shared – not piloted in obscurity, but enabled and encouraged to realise benefits to patients. eHealth is an important enabler to the sharing and protecting of information, where sharing is critical for the delivery of patient safety and care but is controlled by the patient in consultation with the healthcare professional who has a legitimate relationship with the patient.”

Prof Frank Murray, President of the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland, welcomed the new HSE knowledge and information plan as an important initiative to improve patient care. He said the Using technology in this way can greatly improve patient safety which is always our priority. Having easy access to the correct patient information at the right time will help to better inform doctors about the right course of treatment and care for each individual. This could ultimately allow doctors to spend more time with patients and give the patients themselves greater participation in their care.

Jim Breslin, Secretary General for the Department of Health indicated the significance of the plan being published, by saying “the potential of digital technologies to transform service delivery is widely recognised in private and public sectors across the world. Within healthcare environments progress in adopting such systems has not been as great as might initially have been expected, mainly due to the complexity of health care delivery itself. But the best health care systems are now using eHealth technologies to put patients and their information at the centre of health service delivery; supporting new care models, enhancing quality, promoting population health and achieving greater efficiency.
In Ireland we have done important foundational work – such as publishing an eHealth Strategy for Ireland in 2013 and enacting the Health Identifiers Act in 2014 – but much more needs to be done. eHealth will play a critical enabling role in health care reforms including financial reform, the formation of hospital groups and the service reforms that will underpin community based care models. We are also looking forward to the development of our first digital hospital when the new National Children’s Hospital opens at the end of the decade using electronic health records and providing a digital health care environment for the children of Ireland. The Knowledge and Information plan provides a roadmap for what we need to do to develop our digital capability in Irish health care by providing a clear set of principles and identifying the key capability requirements and technology architecture. Publishing the Knowledge & Information plan is another very important step on the digital journey.”

The focus of the web site in 2015 is to communicate to health service providers, vendors and other interested parties.

For more information on the work of the Office of the Chief Information Officer please use the following twitter hash tags: #eHealthIreland; #eHealth4all , where eHealth Ireland will have transparent conversations about the plans for eHealth delivery.