The federal government will develop its very own mobile application for Australians to access the My Health Record, as the overhaul of the country’s national digital health infrastructure gains speed.
The Australian Digital Health Agency revealed plans for the native iOS and Android mobile app – or set of native apps – this week to improve accessibility to information in the ehealth record.
It closely follows consulting giant Deloitte’s contract to deliver the health information gateway that will replace the Oracle API gateway that underpins the My Health Record.
The deal, which the agency has now revealed will cost just shy of $18 million over three years, represents the first phase of a so-called national infrastructure modernisation program that will upgrade the ehealth record.
The first release of the planned app is intended to complement other digital channels connected to the My Health Record system, which is mainly accessible through the government’s myGov portal.
Tender documents show the app will connect to the My Health Record system via the system’s Fast Health Interoperability Resources (FHIR) gateway, though ADHA is open to how this occurs.
The gateway supports two interaction models: one in which the app talks directly to the My Health Record mobile/FHIR gateway, and the other where the app connects via an intermediary server.
“Responding tenderers may choose either approach with their tender offer outlining which approach they are taking,” ADHA said in a request for tender published on Monday.
“There is potential for the successful tenderer to be involved in additional phases, which will be tactically planned to reach parity with the national consumer portal.”
ADHA expects the app will support a minimum of 1500 concurrent users accessing the solution at the same time, with authentication to be done through users’ myGov accounts.
Users will then be able to access the app using either a password, four digit PIN or biometrics (either Apple Touch ID, Apple Face ID or Android biometrics).
One of the main reasons for offering apps appears to be the need to give Australians “easy access” to Covid-19 immunisation certificates, pathology test results and information on vaccination bookings.
Separately, the ADHA said it is currently working on a “Covid-19 dashboard” that will display a “real-time Covid-19 digital status” – an “animated tick” in either green, amber or red.
An individual's status will be calculated by combining data from their latest Covid-19 test results – which will be extracted from pathology reports – and the Australian Immunisation Registry.
But the ADHA also expects the app will show users all other information in their ehealth record, including any medical conditions and allergies, as well as current medicines and their organ donor status.
Users will also be able to access the record of dependents or other individuals which have permitted access through the app.
In addition to building the app and its underlying digital infrastructure, the ADHA is asking that the successful tenderer support the app for at least 12 months after production launch.
The agency also wants a monitoring, reporting and crash analytics service in order to improve future app releases and monitor service level agreements.
An industry briefing for the tender will be held on July 12, with submissions to close on July 30. The ADHA is planning to award a contract in August.