There is growing international recognition that widespread adoption of electronic health records represents a useful resource1–4 and early work suggests that algorithmic processing of large amounts of data may be more effective than traditional scientific methods.5 General practice is widely perceived as an appropriate place for pooling data.6,7 In Australia this pooling could occur effectively through the divisions of general practice. This article is based on the data pooling experience of the Melbourne East General Practice Network (MEGPN) in Victoria.
Throughout the international community there is an increasing focus on
the benefits of collecting, pooling and analysing patient data. General
practice provides a great opportunity to create a comprehensive
database of the Australian population as 90% of Australians visit their
general practitioner each year and general practices are increasingly
This article discusses the facilitatory role divisions of general practice
can play in harnessing quality data from general practice and the
benefits that may follow. It describes experience from 3 years of data
pooling by the Melbourne East General Practice Network in Victoria
and makes recommendations for other organisations interested in data
Download the PDF for the full article.