Feeds

NSW government accused of dodgy software cover-up

FirstNet: the First State's deadest duck

High performance access to file storage

The buggy FirstNet emergency department software has become the subject of a political argument in NSW.

In one of those paradoxes of democracy, an opposition which, in government, was responsible for a now-despised implementation is now using the IT project as a stick to beat a government which was in opposition when the system was chosen.

Last week, the Sydney Morning Herald obtained a report into the system by Deloitte, under a freedom of information request. It says the Deloitte report criticises FirstNet because it is:

- Is chronically under-funded;

- Produces inadequate records;

- Was unreliable in delivering messages, and did not provide alerts when messages failed to reach their destination; and

- Demanded excessive amounts of screen time from clinicians.

In spite of its inadequacies, the Deloitte report seen by the SMH said the $AU100-plus million Cerner FirstNet system is too entrenched to abandon.

Over the weekend, opposition health spokesperson Dr Andrew McDonald issued a statement accusing NSW health minister Jillian Skinner of covering up the report since August 2011.

However, other published studies into FirstNet, such as a detailed investigation by Sydney University e-health expert Professor Jon Patrick here, identify problems similar to those apparently cited by Deloitte. This study was undertaken to investigate issues with FirstNet outlined in November 2008 in a special commission of review, conducted by Peter Garling,

While noting that FirstNet represented an improvement on some aspects of its predecessor, Garling said the system attracted complaints that it was unfriendly to users, that the vendor and Health Department did not respond to complaints about the software, and that emergency department patients were being held in triage for excessive times, while clinical staff fought with the software.

Deloitte, on the other hand, was far less critical of FirstNet in 2008, when in a review of triage benchmarks it managed to turn up a downtime issue, difficulty in uploading triage data to the Health Department, and the identification of the wrong doctor or nurse with a patient’s records. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Sorry London, Europe's top tech city is Munich
New 'Atlas of ICT Activity' finds innovation isn't happening at Silicon Roundabout
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer
Do the right thing, earn up to 10 years in clink
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.