Health IT wins big in QLD budget

Over $200 million in technology spending was laid out for Queensland Health in the state's budget released today.

Over $200 million in technology spending was laid out for Queensland Health in the state's budget released today.

$87.1 million will be invested in the 2009/2010 financial year on e-health clinical systems to contribute to delivering an electronic medical record. Facets of the program include continuing the rollout of a new radiology information system, implementing digital breast screening technology, furthering the implementation of an enterprise discharge summary to improve communication with general practitioners and conducting projects on system security.

A further $86.2 million will be made available to replace and upgrade ICT equipment, including telephone system replacements as well as network and server upgrades, to make it capable of supporting future e-health needs.

The purchase of "advanced" health technology equipment would cost the state $84.5 million, while an infrastructure and IT upgrade for forensic laboratories would cost $11.1 million.

The Department of Education and Training flagged its intention to invest over $100 million in smart classrooms initiatives to give students, teachers and parents access to digital learning materials. It also laid $20 million on the line for the state's Computers for Teacher's program which provides dedicated computers for the classroom.

The state also spent big on police IT, with $100.5 million earmarked to be spent on projects such as data transfer with the Department of Justice and the Attorney General and the Department of Community Safety. It will also fund Policelink ($29.3 million), a new contact centre for non-urgent calls, as well as the delivery of computer aided dispatch and digital camera traffic systems. $2.3 million will be spent on "interim" telephone interception capability to monitor motorcycle gangs.

The Department of the Attorney-General will spend $20.8 million over five years to implement technology to replace paper-based records for births, deaths and marriages.

The Department of Public Works, which oversees the state's shared services implementer CorpTech and state-owned IT services provider CITEC, has set a capital budget of $49 million for CorpTech this year. CITEC will get $43 million, of which the state's Technology Transformation Program amounts to $24 million. CorpTech's total budget is $123 million, while CITEC's is $174 million.