Digital Health Update Newsletter – September 2020

Digital Health Update Newsletter – September 2020

10 September, 2020

Getting reading for Electronic Prescriptions (EP)

To support those people most at risk from COVID-19, the rollout of electronic prescriptions across Greater Melbourne will be expanded beyond the current communities of interest.

Your practice may be ready for electronic prescriptions, particularly in updating to the latest version of your Clinical software and Electronic Prescribing software (ie eRX or MediSecure) and ensuring your NASH PKI certificate is current.

Medical Director has issued a media release that they are preparing a resource pack which includes all your practice needs to get up and running and the latest software patch will be issued shortly.

For those practices using Best Practice, to be enabled for electronic prescribing, you will need to upgrade to version Jade SP3.

Connecting with your Local Pharmacies

E-Prescribing can only work for a patient if both their GP and Pharmacy are participating in E-Prescribing. Getting in touch with your local pharmacies to ascertain if they are ready and partaking in Electronic Dispensing will save you having to reissue paper prescriptions for patients and allow you to promote Electronic Prescribing with peace of mind. If your local pharmacy is not sure where to start with Electronic Prescribing, refer them back to us, the Digital Health team at EMPHN for assistance.

Electronic Prescribing Promotional Collateral

The Australian Digital Health Agency has released a range of electronic prescription resources via their Print on Demand (POD) portal. They include printed (posters, tent cards, window decals etc.) and digital assets (social media tiles, email graphics, email wording etc.) to order and print or download.

Details are as follows:

Username: PHN_MHR

Password: myhealthrecord

In the meantime, the following may assist your practice in (EP) readiness, along with referring to the Checklist on our website:

Updating Patient email details

One of our practices recently generated a list of patients from their Clinical Information System who did not have an email address recorded. (Note this can be done using POLAR)

The practice sent these patients an SMS with a link to an online survey (Survey Monkey) asking patients to update their email addresses.

150 patients immediately responded to the SMS updating their email addresses and the practice received over 100 phone calls from patients verifying the link of these another 50 patients completed the survey updating their email addresses.

The practice then used the results to update their database in readiness for the electronic prescribing, which is being implemented this year and is currently being beta tested in some clinics and pharmacies.

Some learnings from the practice were that if they were going to repeat this exercise, they will send out an additional SMS first letting patients know that they will be sending out the survey link so that patients did not flood the practice with phone calls and could verify that the link was safe.


If your practice is considering a telehealth solution, you can still participate in EMPHN’s trial to use Healthdirect video call until 30/09/2020 - by completing this online form. We are currently awaiting an update from the Commonwealth on the extension of this pilot.

EMPHN has developed a patient centred ‘telehealth’ resource for your patients which can be tailored for your practice to include your practice name and details.

Update 1 September 2020: SR Specialists & Referrals Service (available in BP & MD)

Electronic referrals through the SR Specialists & Referrals service in HealthLink are now steadily growing. As receiving referrals electronically is a new experience for some specialist practices, the support team at SR are providing daily training to specialist staff regarding opening their HealthLink SR referrals.

Please email if you know of any specialist practice that may benefit from more training and we will contact them and provide further assistance.

Further information regarding the SR Specialists & Referrals service.

My Health Record

Use of the My Health Record system has increased rapidly during COVID-19 in hospitals across Melbourne.

How are the hospitals we refer to using the My Health Record system?

The Digital Health team at EMPHN is still offering remote My Health Record training- contact us at if you too would like to streamline the way you access information from your patient’s last hospital visit.


If you missed our half day POLAR event earlier this month, a recording can be accessed through our website, or through the links following: Session 1 (Beginners) and Session 2 (Intermediate)

Coming Soon-New Data Sharing Agreements will be sent out in the coming weeks the Agreements will need to be signed by the authorised signatory for the practice.

The Digital Health Team is available to assist practices with the use of POLAR. If you would like to organise POLAR training contact us on we are able to provide this remotely.


The new PIP quarter began on August 1st so for those opted in for PIP QI, it’s time to start thinking about your next Quality Improvement Activity. For those who missed out on our half day POLAR event, we introduced a suggested QI Activity around keeping patients at high risk of hospitalisation at home through comprehensive preventative care. A copy of the walk-through for this using the Hospitalisation Risk Report in POLAR, along with the PDSA can be found here.