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Telus announces Investement of $100 Million over 3 years

Posted Nov 21 2008 2:04pm

Canadian Healthcare Technology - November 20, 2008:

TORONTO – Telus announced that it will make capital investments in the healthcare segment of $100 million over the next three years. At the same time, the company launched its new brand, Telus Health Solutions. “Many Canadians understand and support the need for technology in the Canadian healthcare system,” said Joe Natale, president, Telus Business Solutions. “The transformation of healthcare in Canada is a huge undertaking that will take many hands. “As a sign of our commitment,” said Natale, “we are announcing our plans to invest $100 million in developing Telus Health Solutions over the next three years.

We are very serious about making a difference in Canadian healthcare with applications and technology infrastructure that collects, processes, stores, and delivers health information.”

The announcement was made in Toronto in conjunction with a roundtable discussion with Joe Natale, president, Business Solutions and François Côté, president, TELUS  Health Solutions,Dr. Alan Brookstone, Sam Marafioti, CIO, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Jean Huot, CIO, McGill University Health Centre,  and Wayne Gudbranson, CEO Branham Group.

Dr. Alan Brookstone, a physician and founder of the web site, which provides analysis and discussion of issues surrounding the electronic health record, hailed the concept of the personal health record. But he struck a realistic note, stating that only 20% to 25% of primary care physicians and specialists currently make use of an electronic record, thus making it difficult to move key patient information into personal health record repositories. He said, however, that if electronic medical record systems were improved, physicians would be more eager to adopt them. It’s a misconception to think physicians are against technology, said Dr. Brookstone. But technology must be integrated into their workflow without disrupting the way they practice medicine.

At the same time, there are electronic solutions that would greatly improve the quality of care given to patients, solutions that don’t require a full-blown electronic medical record. These include electronic referrals to specialists and electronic prescribing, which would reduce the incidence of prescribing errors.

Wayne Gudbranson, president and CEO of Branham Group, a consultancy in Ottawa, stated at the event that Canada now spends $146 billion per year on healthcare. Outcomes could be improved through the use of personal health record systems, he said. “The PHR is the ultimate goal. It will allow us to take responsibility for our own health.”

To read the full article, click here.
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