Healthlink's core brief is to provide a messaging service that allows patient information to be securely transferred between primary and secondary care health systems.
Healthlink has been operational since 1995 as a single hospital proof-of-concept and has evolved over time going on to achieve national broker status for country-wide health messaging.
Healthlink transfers a range of reports and structured clinical messages in real time. Message files are specified in HL7, an internationally recognised standard for healthcare information exchange and formatted in XML.
Over the years Healthlink has enabled integration with the 4 accredited GP practice management systems, a number of hospital EPR systems, MN-CMS, Swiftqueue appointment scheduling system and COVAX.
Healthlink now as a user base in excess of 14,000 across 1,900 sites. The A2i-HIDs support team provide support and training on all aspects of the application from downloading test reports to sending eReferrals. Users vary from GPs and their staff to public health practitioners and hospital admin teams. The range of message types has grown to include a suite of referrals, radiology orders along with vaccination reports, sick certs, maternity shared-care reports and PCRS reimbursements.
Cloud Migration Project
Since inception, the Healthlink infrastructure has been located in the Mater Hospital data centres. Several key factors such as accelerated growth coinciding with end-of-life hardware resulted in the decision to move to a cloud platform.
In 2020 the Healthlink team upgraded its hosting infrastructure to provide a cloud-based disaster recovery solution in advance of an ultimate migration to the cloud. Pandemic response took priority for the following 18 months, but the plan was always to complete a full migration project as soon as possible.
The Cloud Migration project recommenced in earnest in January 2022. This involved a ‘Lift and Shift’ solution replicating the entire on-premise environment onto Microsoft Azure (IaaS). The scope was to change only what was necessary to have the system functional, secure and scalable. The project was carried out by a small, dedicated team who spent months deploying, configuring and testing the system before successfully enabling the production application in the cloud on June 22nd this year.
The next 12 months of our cloud modernisation programme will utilise cloud native components to further enhance our service in terms of modernisation, usability, scalability and security.
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