Digital Health to switch out Oracle gateway for new API system

Digital Health to switch out Oracle gateway for new API system

New system needs to provide a single point of access to the National Digital Health Ecosystem

Credit: Dreamstime

The Australian Digital Health Agency (ADHA) looks set to ditch its Oracle-based application programming interface (API) gateway system as it hunts for a partner to build a new single point of access to the National Digital Health Ecosystem. 

In a request for tender issued on 13 November, the ADHA said it was looking for a service provider to implement a solution and supporting services that will create a standalone capability for digital health products and services, including the federal government’s My Health Record System.

The My Health Record System currently processes about 1.26 billion transactions per year.

The solution, which will be included in the Health API Gateway Services stack, needs to provide a single point of access to the National Digital Health Ecosystem, tender documents said.

The Health API Gateway is set to become a foundational capability within the National Digital Health Ecosystem Future State Concept, providing a single point of access to digital health systems and services across the digital Health ecosystem.

Broadly, the Health API Gateway will be consumed by developers of health consumer and provider applications through a range of digital channels, including clinical systems, web portals and mobile apps along with consumption by jurisdictions and other government agencies.

According to the documents, the proposed solution to be delivered will need to replace the current Oracle API gateway product with a contemporary system that supports the existing My Health Record System and is extensible to other systems.

It will also need to support existing My Health Record interfaces and services in place at present through the delivery of equivalent — but contemporary — functionality. Moreover, the delivery partner will need to consolidate existing multiple API gateways into a single solution and migrate delivery of services across to the new system.

The ADHA said it anticipates that these phases would allow a transition from the Oracle API gateway to a new solution. 

The project is part of the broader National Infrastructure Modernisation (NIM) Program which, as the name suggests, aims to modernise the infrastructure supporting Australia’s digital health services. 

The ADHA engaged industry through a formal request for Information (RFI) issued on 26 September 2019, with 36 responses to the RFI from a diverse range of organisations and industries – including large and small IT organisations, professional services organisations, and peak bodies.

A number of common concepts were identified across the responses, including the assertion that the national infrastructure should be flexible in its ability to evolve and improve over time and that it should be highly interconnected and operate as a single cohesive ecosystem.

Consistent with current digital sourcing policies, the ADHA said it had determined that a modern approach to the replacement of the services currently provided by Accenture, the current contractor which operates and manages the My Health Record System on the agency’s behalf, will be undertaken in the NIM Program. 

This will involve a series of activities that may result in multiple service provider contracts delivering flexibility and competition, the ADHA said.

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