04:05am Tuesday 07 April 2020

Privacy legislation needs amendments to improve health outcomes

Speaking ahead of her presentation at an ‘ICT for Life Sciences’ forum at the University on Monday July 12, Professor Skene says developments in precision medicine require a rethink of how we currently administer patient care.

“’Precision medicine’ will enable medications and other treatments to be given to patients taking account of their own specific characteristics.  To do this effectively, we will need to amend our privacy laws and to have an effective method of securely recording and retrieving patients’ medical details when needed, both to treat that person and to assist in treating his or her blood relatives.

“Instead of focussing on the right of individual patients to control their personal information themselves, and not to have information about them collected or used without their consent, we should take a more holistic view.

“We should acknowledge the potential advantages for patients in having their information recorded in a secure form in a central register which can be accessed by their health professionals as the need arises. This will minimise unnecessary repeated procedures and enable treatment to be personalised for individual patients.”

A member of the University’s Health Informatics Steering Group and the NHMRC Australian Health Ethics Committee, Professor Skene will speak on ‘Electronic Health Records: Legal Issues’ from 6pm in the Brown Theatre (Ground Floor, Building 193, Wilson Avenue) at the University of Melbourne.

To register for this free event please visit the ICT for Life Sciences Forum website at http://ict4lifesciences.org.au/.

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