Aviation 022/17

Status: Open
Recommendation Date: 
28 June 2017
Recipient Name: 
Ministry of Health
Text:
There is the potential for applicants for medical certificates to attempt to circumvent the medical assessment process by inaccurately representing their state of health through the misreporting of their treatment, including undisclosed medications and possible multiple GPs and other health professionals. This risk is shared by other transport modes that require a person to hold a medical certificate or make a declaration on their health status. A national health database would provide one means of addressing this risk.

On 28 June 2017 the Commission recommended to the Chief Executive of the Ministry of Health that he consider adding the following functions to the national electronic health record database under development:

- that a person's occupation be added to the record to allow monitoring of individuals who hold transport-related documents that require periodic medical checks, and who have potentially adverse health conditions or medications, so that the appropriate authority can be alerted to possible public safety risks
- a mechanism to draw the attention of all health practitioners to their obligation to notify the appropriate transport authority when a person or patient has a health condition or need for medication that could pose a threat to public safety in that individual's occupation.
Reply Text:
The National Electronic Health Record Business Case project is a significant project that is working though a Treasury Better Business Case (BBC) process. This process is for agencies that have significant proposals that will have a whole of life cost of more than $25 million.

The BBC process has a number of stages and at this point we are close to completing stage 2 of 4. At the completion of stage 4 we expect that we will begin to implement the solution for the National Electronic Health Record, timing for the duration of the implementation phase is yet to be determined. With our current timeline, we expect this to begin no earlier than late 2018 pending approval from Cabinet and successfully delivering the business case process and large scale procurements required.

With these timings in mind, we recognise that there is a requirement to hold the occupation for an individual and to be able to undertake reporting and processes related to the occupation should potentially adverse health and/or medications be identified. At this stage we cannot commit that the functionality that has been suggested will be implemented and will not be in a position to do so until the Business Case process is completed. However, while we cannot yet confirm the details of this type of functionality, we can and will take this into account during our deliberations and include in our business case documentation the advantages of having this type of functionality tied into the Electronic Health Record once established.
Related Investigation(s):