IBM has won a $23.6 million contract from the Government’s National E-Health Transition Authority (NEHTA) to design and build the National Authentication Service for Health (NASH) project.
According to an IBM spokesperson, the whole infrastructure project is set to be rolled out by June 30, 2012. It claimed this project would form the cornerstone of any national e-health system.
The system aims to become the first national authentication system for electronic records gathered from various health bodies. The system is needed to make sure all data transferred between departments is secure and genuine.
According to a statement from NEHTA, IBM will use its hardware, software and service capabilities to manage the project delivery of the system for healthcare providers.
“NEHTA is providing a software development kit (SDK) that will allow existing healthcare systems and deployments to quickly and seamlessly integrate with NASH,” the statement added.
IBM managing director, Andrew Stevens, said the project would encourage more widespread acceptance of electronic health records and systems.
“This programme will benefit over 600,000 Australian doctors, nurses and allied health providers and accelerate the delivery of smarter healthcare across the entire healthcare system,” he said in the statement.
In mid 2010, IBM came under fire for allegedly bungling a large payroll service implementation for Queensland Health. The project start date blew out from eight to 26 months and when it finally went online a litany of major problems ensued.
The Government announced $466.7m for the creation of a national electronic medical record system in the most recent Federal Budget. But the Coalition has repeatedly called for its cancellation and claimed the funds should be diverted to other needs.