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New health business aims to improve access

4th November 2004

New health business aims to improve access to information for patients and caregivers

Counties Manukau District Health Board and a number of private medical organisations are piloting a new health information service for patients, their families and primary caregivers.

Healthpoint Limited, a New Zealand-owned business, is behind the new service.

"Healthpoint has developed an easy to use Internet site that has local information about what to expect when referred to secondary and tertiary health services," Managing Director Kate Rhind said.

"The information on the website is provided by public and private hospitals, doctors and other health professionals and is aimed at patients, their families, caregivers and other health practitioners.

“The health service providers have editorial access to a database enabling them to update information as needed. For users, this means the information is always relevant and local. By using Healthpoint patients are better informed about healthcare services such as procedures or assessments. This increases the trust and effectiveness of the relationship between patient and healthcare provider. It will improve the outcomes of health service provision and save time and money, allowing valuable health resources to achieve better results," Ms Rhind said.

Dr Allan Moffitt, Director of Primary Care Development at Counties Manukau District Health Board (CMDHB), said," We are trialing Healthpoint for CMDHB in respiratory, orthopaedics and radiology for both Middlemore Hospital and the Manukau SuperClinic. We see Healthpoint as an easy to use vehicle that will assist us to improve our communications with our patients.

“Senior consultants have written the information on our services. We think providing the information to patients and caregivers in this manner prior to their appointment will increase patient satisfaction, empowerment and help patients understand what is going to happen to them on visiting a service."

Ms Rhind said that Healthpoint also has information on private cardiology and radiology healthcare services in both Auckland and Dunedin. "The GPs and clinicians with whom we have thus far spoken are saying similar things to Counties Manukau District Health Board. Everyone in healthcare service provision is looking to get better outcomes for patients and we believe Healthpoint can contribute to this process.

"We are talking to a number of organisations with the expectation of covering more and more therapeutic areas and geographical regions over the coming year. Healthpoint is also talking to other District Health Boards throughout NZ with the objective of utilising our services for their communication to their patients. Ultimately, Healthpoint’s goal is to be a nation-wide service where patients can access accurate, local, health information," Ms Rhind said.

ENDS

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