Expansion of health services with Telehealth

Page 2 of 2
DHI405 Digital Informatics – Assessment 3
Challenge Scenarios
Challenge Scenario 1: Expansion of health services with Telehealth
The Context
Telehealth was initiated in Australia around late 2007 (CSIRO, 2012) to reach remote areas using
technology. In 2021, the mandatory uptake of the technology rendered by the pandemic in 2020 has
resulted in faster uptake by health professionals and patients across Australia (2021). Telehealth also
makes it easier for medical practitioners to conduct inter-jurisdictional patient consultations. Some
key points according to Medical Board of Australia (2021) include:
GPs, specialists and allied health service providers need to ensure that the systems they use
to store patient data are secure and that their remote working environment and information
handling practices comply with applicable privacy laws.
Digital health technology providers need to ensure that their structures are secure and
privacy law compliant. These include systems and practices of their third-party infrastructure
providers (for example, Microsoft Cloud Services). Compliance with accepted information
exchange protocols and integration with MyHealthRecord is also required.
Medical practitioners using technology to provide inter-jurisdictional medical consultations
or services to patients in Australia have to be:
o registered with the Medical Board of Australia, regardless of where the practitioner
is located
o consider the appropriateness of a technology-based consultation for each patient’s
circumstances
o comply with the requirements of the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law
(2021) (the National Law) as in force in each State and Territory of Australia
o comply with the Medical Board of Australia’s registration standards, codes and
guidelines including the Professional Indemnity Insurance Registration Standard,
which requires that a medical practitioner is insured for all aspects of their medical
practice.
In this scenario, a professional health services group located in rural New South Wales wishes to
expand their services using telehealth across to the Northern Territory (NT), Western Australia (WA)
and South Australia (SA). The group currently includes doctors (GPs), specialist nurses,
physiotherapists and dental practitioners. The group wishes to include counselling and
psychotherapy as services via telehealth across the two new states.
For this assessment, your group will act as a “steering committee” which will include:
Representative/s from the health services
Representative/s of existing clientele with lived experiences
Page 2 of 2
Representative/s members from two new states
Representative/s client members from proposed states
An advisory representative from the government.
The task of the steering committee (your group) would be to:
(1) Understand the context
(2) Evaluate strategies to implement telehealth practices
(3) Identify risks
(4) Prepare an action or rollout plan
The presentation will identify stakeholders from each of the groups (as above) and each member will
assume a role. The presentation will require each role/member to inform the committee on
requirements, risks, steps to follow and guidance.
Please note that true representation of all stakeholders is required, not on the basis of profession or
current roles but in terms of diversity. The steering committee will also need to include a
chairperson for the committee who will preside and also finalise on the actionable steps for each
member.
References:
Health Practitioner Regulation National Law. (2021). https://www.ahpra.gov.au/about-ahpra/whatwe-do/legislation.aspx” https://www.ahpra.gov.au/about-ahpra/what-we-do/legislation.aspx
Medical Board of Australia. (2021), Guidelines and Policies Fact Sheet.
https://www.medicalboard.gov.au/Codes-Guidelines-Policies/FAQ/Information-interjurisdictionaltechnology-consultations.aspx
CSIRO .(2012). Telehealth Services for Remote Australia – A Report. November 7th.
https://publications.csiro.au/rpr/download?pid=csiro:EP129006&dsid=DS1
Page 2 of 2
Challenge Scenario 2: Software as a Service in Aged Care Services
The Context
Software which meets the definition of “medical device” or SaMD (TGA, 2021a) under section 41BD
of the
Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 (TGA, 2021b) must be registered on the Australian Register of
Therapeutic Goods before it can be supplied. Examples of SaMD include mobile apps coupled with
devices that calculate insulin doses based on a person’s blood glucose levels, x-ray image processing
software and software that uses information about symptoms to make a diagnosis. Given that a
device used to monitor a body function will be a medical device, the impact of regulation must be
considered in the early stages of development.
Any digital health technology delivered to Australian consumers must also comply with the
Australian Consumer Law (ACL).(ACL,2021) This includes a statutory guarantee that the technology
will be of acceptable quality, including that it will be fit for the purpose that the supplier said it
would be fit for. The ACL also prohibits a supplier from making false or misleading representations.
In addition, unfair contract terms must not be included in any standard form agreement that
individual consumers may be required to agree to before they can use the technology. A supplier
cannot exclude the application of the ACL to its contracts with consumers (for example, by making
the user terms subject to the laws of a foreign jurisdiction). Compliance with the ACL will assist to
build a supplier’s reputation and trust amongst users, which will be critical to user uptake in the
digital health sector.
In this scenario, a group of medical and allied health practitioners (based in Victoria) which
services aged care clients are considering deployment of a contactless mobile solution to
offer “contactless support” in the post pandemic situation. The solution will be used by
health workers in aged care facilities to monitor and care for the senior clientele. The group
has engaged a software vendor and the building management of a facility in a consultative
committee to discuss a strategy.
Your group is a consultative committee having representatives from:
(1) Health Service
(2) Aged Care Facility
(3) Software Vendor
(4) Senior clientele champion
(5) Union representative (health workers in aged care)
To complete this assessment task, your group members must individually assume the above
roles. The potential solution is to assist senior care facility workers (for example, nurses,
patient care assistants) to monitor residents of a facility using an app on their smartphones.
The technological infrastructure will combine a private cloud infrastructure and wearables
(worn by residents), so that health workers can collect vitals at specific intervals, monitor
falls and assist residents in an emergency by connecting to emergency services if needed. In
the future, the solution would also enable connected residents to speak with their families
or be offered telehealth services by health professionals.

Page 2 of 2
Your group will need to discuss requirements, identify and assess risks, and prepare plans
for the product that will be developed by the vendor and trialled in the facility. The vendor
would be required to follow TGA guidelines and ACL requirements. Each of the
representatives (as above) will have a role to present their perspective from that viewpoint
and also offer some guidelines for others.
Please note that diversity in the consultative committee is the key to success.
References
ACL (2021) Australian Consumer Law. https://consumerlaw.gov.au/australian-consumerlaw/legislation
TGA (2021a) Regulation of Software based Medical Devices, https://www.tga.gov.au/regulationsoftware-based-medical-devices
TGA (2021b) Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 41 BD., Cth.
http://www5.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/tga1989191/s41bd.html