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Innovating and strengthening NT health system

Northern Territory Health, Aboriginal Medical Services Alliance NT (AMSANT) and Northern Territory Primary Health Network (NT PHN) have partnered to increase the use of digital health technologies. Digital health enables better-coordinated care and better-informed treatment decisions.

The NT’s population has some of the most vulnerable people in Australia with high levels of social disadvantage and a high burden of chronic disease. One of the most significant outcomes for the day-to-day provision of health services to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic was the uptake of telehealth services in both urban and remote settings.

The increased use of digital technologies and innovation will assist in early treatment and intervention preventing unnecessary in hospital admissions and decreasing long-distance travel. The fully-implemented strategy will also lead to more care on-country.

Increased care on-country requires the use of digital health technologies to link community-based staff with specialist advice from major centres.

The four main areas of the Digital Strategy are:

  • Building healthier communities by empowering our people and communities to actively engage in their healthcare journey;
  • Enabling our workforce to improve current healthcare delivery approaches and embrace new ways of working;
  • Connecting our healthcare system to ensure effective digital connections between systems, people and processes; and
  • Harnessing innovation to pursue technological advancements and innovation that will benefit our healthcare system.

The consortium will work with the Australian Digital Health Agency, other NT Government agencies, the Australian Government, private sector and technology partners and innovators.

The Minister for Health stated that digital health is particularly important in the NT because of the region’s vast geographic region and remote populations, making service delivery challenging in some areas. The strategy allows Territorians, no matter where they live, to have access to specialist care in their time of need at home. All strategy partners were thanked for their involvement and commitment to such an important piece of work that will improve health outcomes for Territorians.

Using tech to boost safety amidst pandemic

OpenGov Asia recently reported that the Northern Territory Government released a new app to help local businesses and organisations with the new COVID-safe check-in system that begins from next week. The Territory Check In app means venues who are required to start collecting visitor information won’t have to set up their own system. It is a contactless, secure and simple way for customers and visitors to sign in to establishments, using a QR Code.

When individuals arrive at a location and scan the QR Code, their details will be securely stored by NT Health for 28 days, to ensure contact tracing can occur quickly and effectively if it is required. Customer information will only be accessed if required for contact tracing.

Territorians and visitors will only need to supply their personal details once upon registration for the app, and a member of a party can also check-in friends and family who might not have their own device. Every participating venue will have a unique QR Code and scanning the Code will automatically register the date and time of the visit.

The Territory Check In is free to use and became available via the Apple App Store or Google Play for Territorians to download and register on 30 November 2020. The Northern Territory Government is using the same platform as the ACT Government.

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