Planning will recommence after delivery of first phase.The replacement of Australia’s outdated bowel screening register remains without a go-live date almost a year after a complex data migration process stalled the original launch.
Australia’s new Telstra-built cancer screening register is a single platform that will replace the paper-based national bowel screening register as well as the eight separate cervical cancer screening registers operated by the states and territories.
Telstra won a $220 million contract to implement and maintain the single national record for the screening of cervical and bowel cancers in May 2016.
The register was first intended to go live in time to support both the national bowel cancer screening program in March 2017 and national cervical screening program in May 2017.
But the go-live was pushed back by a complex data migration process, stalling the bowel and cervical cancer programs and resulting in extra costs for the Health department.
The system officially went live on December 1 with new human papillomavirus (HPV) tests for cervical cancer, but will remain only partially functional until next month when the transfer of historical information from the state and territory cervical registers is complete.
However the overhaul of the bowel cancer register looks some time off, with a senate committee today informed that there was currently no go-live date for this major component of the program.
“The national bowel cancer screening register planning will recommence at a point in time when we fully deliver the register service for cervical,” first assistant secretary of the national cancer screening taskforce Bettina Konti said.
Security, privacy plans now in place
The Department of Health also today revealed it had acted on criticisms about the system's security and privacy provisions.
A June 2017 audit of the system's procurement revealed the Health department had no plan for how Telstra would manage the privacy and security of the register a year after the contract was signed.