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1. National standards and specifications

This content is draft for consultation. 


Adherence to standards and specifications is essential for healthcare systems to ensure seamless data exchange and interoperability across all systems. Prioritising standards-based solutions that integrate with national systems like the Healthcare Identifier (HI) Service allows accurate identification of individuals and healthcare providers during information exchange.

National standards and specifications and examples are outlined below. They are applicable to healthcare systems and technologies and should be reviewed during procurement processes. 

General requirements 

All systems and technologies in Australia must adhere to these requirements:

  • Cyber security: 

    must demonstrate adherence to the ‘Essential 8’ cyber security principles

  • Privacy:

    Data collected about an individual by medical software is likely to constitute health information (which is sensitive information, a category of personal information that generally has a higher degree of privacy protection than other personal information) under relevant federal, state and territory privacy legislation. Systems must demonstrate adherence to the Privacy Act 1988. State based requirements also apply based on location. Further details are provided within the individual system content.

Core requirements

All healthcare systems and technologies must adhere to these requirements:

  • Standards for identification: 

    the Healthcare Identifiers Act 2010 is a legislation that specifies the use of healthcare identifiers for healthcare and related management purposes. Identification standards such as Healthcare Identifiers, GS1 and ICCBBA ensure accurate and consistent identification within all processes and systems.

  • Australian Core Data for Interoperability (AUCDI): 

    AU CDI Release 1 details the absolute minimum data required to support standardised clinical information capture at the point of care and enables the safe and meaningful exchange of information to other care providers

  • Standards for data sharing: 

    the use of HL7 frameworks and implementation guides are defined as the relevant standards for the electronic exchange of healthcare information. HL7 CDA has been used historically, however there is increasing use of HL7 Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) Release 5 being defined. 

  • Standards for terminology, code sets and classifications: 

    most communication between health information systems relies on terminologies, code sets and classification systems to represent health concepts. Terminology standards like SNOMED CT-AULogical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes (LOINC), and the metadata standards defined by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s METEOR Online Registry enable the communication of medical concepts

  • National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards: 

    these standards have been developed by the Australian Commission on Safety & Quality in Health Care to provide a nationally consistent statement of the level of care consumers can expect from health service organisations

  • Other Standards: 

    healthcare systems/technologies may also be subject to other requirements like the Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) Standard - a global standard for the communication and management of medical imaging and health care information. Consumer data standards may also apply.


Next: 2. Connections to national systems 

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This content is draft for consultation. To learn more about the Guidelines, the phased publication approach, or if you are interested in being part of future reference groups, please contact us via the form below.