April 30, 2024

Digital Health News – April 2024

Working in healthcare today is particularly exciting, as the ever-changing digital landscape presents both challenges and opportunities. Collaboration remains at the heart of our success as we deliver on Western Health’s Digital Health agenda together. 

Part of our focus related to continuing improvement is the work optimising our EMR (Electronic Medical Record) functionality and support, especially in the Specialist Clinics areas where we have gained some momentum with more “at the elbow” support. 

We have made great strides with our digital transformation over the last six years, and this is due to the hard work and dedication of all Western Health staff. While there is much work to be done, it is important to pause and reflect on our achievements to date.  

I am thrilled to share Western Health’s recent recognition at the Healthcare Asia Awards 2024 as the recipient of the ICT Initiative of the Year – Australia. This award celebrates the exceptional collaboration and unwavering dedication of Western Health staff over the four-year, EMR Phase 2.1 project. 

I look forward to seeing the transformative impact we will make together this year, as we focus on delivering health and well-being services for the people of the West.  


Lily Liu 

Director, Digital Health 

  • Western Health wins Healthcare Asia Award!

    Western Health has been awarded the ICT Initiative of the Year – Australia at the Healthcare Asia Awards 2024 for the successful expansion of the Electronic Medical Record (EMR) system, known as the EMR Phase 2.1 project.  

    The Healthcare Asia Awards recognise exceptional healthcare providers that have redefined healthcare standards through innovation, setting new industry benchmarks, and making substantial contributions to their communities.  

    This award is a testament to the incredible enthusiasm and immense effort of our dedicated staff, including more than 1,000 Super Users, who worked hand in hand with the Digital Health team to make the EMR Phase 2.1 project a success. 

    The EMR Phase 2.1 project has been instrumental in delivering reduced clinical risk and ensuring safe and effective patient care. The project extended the EMR to clinical areas that needed to transition between electronic systems or between electronic and paper processes. In July and August 2023, the EMR modules were successfully implemented in emergency departments, intensive care units, specialist clinics, theatres, oncology, and newborn services across Sunshine, Williamstown, Sunbury and Footscray hospitals. This expansion provided enhanced integration and easier access to information, improving overall patient care. 

    Bacchus Marsh and Melton Digital Health Transition Project

    The Bacchus Marsh and Melton (BMM) Digital Health Transition project is gaining momentum, specifically the efforts to extend Western Health’s well-integrated solution for documenting and managing patient care to BMM sites.  

    The project team are undertaking the next phase of testing, focusing on the BMM workflows across different systems.  

    More than 300 BMM staff attended the “Introduction to the EMR” drop-in sessions earlier in the year.   Our Digital Health Training team continues to support BMM staff, including those at Grant Lodge Residential Aged Care with ‘EMR for View Only’ training sessions. This enables staff to view the clinical information of patients referred to them from other Western Health sites, including Sunshine, Footscray, Williamstown and Sunbury sites.  

    These sessions are important for both clinical and clerical staff. If your team at BMM has not yet attended ‘EMR for View Only’ training, we encourage you to reach out to our training team at WHS-EMRTrainers@wh.org.au. 

    Optimisation of EMR – Specialist clinics update

    The Digital Health team continues to prioritise the initiative focusing on the optimisation of the Electronic Medical Record (EMR) functionality and support related to Specialist Clinics at Western Health (WH).  

    Several initiatives were completed during April 2024. They include: 

    • The ‘Referral Letter – ISBAR’ pilot for clinicians referring to selected WH services 
    • Onsite visits by senior clinicians from Oracle Health who met with clinicians and administration staff to observe current workflows and collect feedback  
    • ‘At the elbow’ support from the Digital Health Medical Informatics team, who have met with 18 Senior Medical Staff (SMS) Specialists and 13 Heads of Units 
    • The appointment of Serena Sze as Clinical Informatics Medical Officer – Outpatient Optimisation lead  
    • A printing improvements pilot at Footscray Hospital Level 2 and Sunshine Hospital Pod 1 
    • Single label printing enhancements  
    • Enhancements to surgical waiting list workflows 
    • Improvements to VINAH to address system defects and reduce errors 
    • Prompts to assist clerical staff in selecting the correct account class to improve Medicare billing 
    • The development of two quick reference guides to assist clinicians in viewing Next of Kin details within the EMR. 


    The team continues to communicate with Operations and Clinical managers to provide updates and support for staff. A focus during May will be reviewing the current support arrangement and evaluating opportunities to provide more ‘at the elbow’ support on a permanent basis.  

    If you are a member of the SMS team who would benefit from ‘at the elbow’ support, please reach out to Serena Sze at Serena.Sze@wh.org.au.  

    A summary of all EMR updates made throughout April 2024 is available on the new EMR Updates page

    Mental Health and Wellbeing Services: EMR Discovery Project update

    The Mental Health and Wellbeing EMR Discovery project is moving at pace! With additional staff on board, visits to all bed-based services and the drafting of all service workflow documentation are progressing swiftly.  

    Improved communication and collaboration across teams is resulting in a deeper understanding of both inpatient and community settings. The project team is also diligently mapping the technical landscape, ensuring alignment with existing and emerging systems.  

    The focus during April and May 2024 is consultation with key medical professionals and targeted focus groups to solidify current state processes and data requirements. Stay tuned for further updates! 


    New Footscray Hospital and Sunbury Community Hospital projects

    In collaboration with other teams across Western Health, the Digital Health team is actively supporting the New Footscray Hospital and Sunbury Community Hospital projects. 

    New Footscray Hospital 

    The Digital Health team is working to integrate Digital Health applications into the New Footscray Hospital. The EMR requirements gathering phase is underway and will collect necessary information for Oracle Health to complete the EMR build, which commenced in mid-April 2024.  

    The project will shortly commence the assessment of scope for technology, interfaces and other Digital Health applications. 

    Sunbury Community Hospital  

    As part of the Sunbury Community Hospital project, the Digital Health team is collaborating with other teams across Western Health to integrate Digital Health systems and implement new devices. They include: 

    • Dialysis expansion  
    • Oncology expansion  
    • ICT devices  
    • Biomedical devices (Urgent Care) 
    • Urgent Care EMR implementation  
    • Pharmacy connectivity with iPM and EMR 


    Enhance your EMR learning using the EMR Practice Environment

    In addition to completing your EMR courses on WeLearn, you can now use the EMR Practice Environment to assist with your learning. You can find instructions on how to access the EMR Practice Environment via this QRG. 

    Role-specific usernames and passwords, along with dedicated test patients are provided to enhance the realism of the learning experience. Any information entered in the patient’s chart will be refreshed and removed each night. 

    Visit the EMR Training and Practicing page to find out more about learning.  

    Please contact the Digital Health Training team if you have any queries – WHS-EMRTrainers@wh.org.au. 


    Access our learning resources in one easy location

    You can now access all digital health learning resources under the Quick Reference Guide section on the Digital Health site. 

    1. Enter the topic in the ‘Search Guide’ area or Click on the letter if you know the category

    2. You will now be able to view both QRGs and videos 


    3. Alternatively, you can select videos from the ‘all disciplines’ drop-down list 


    As part of our focus on tailoring our learning offering to your needs, our Digital Health Training team is constantly adding to the resource library. Please contact the Digital Health Training team if you have any queries – WHS-EMRTrainers@wh.org.au. 

Page last updated: 30 April 2024