The Hunter will launch personally controlled electronic health records in the coming weeks, ahead of a national rollout on July 1.
Hunter Urban Medicare Local has spent the past year doing preparatory work.
The Medicare Local’s primary care, IT and e-health director John Baillie said the Hunter system would go live in the next few weeks.
About 120 general practices had indicated a willingness to participate and the focus would now turn to patient recruitment.
Mr Baillie said the e-record was a summary of health information, not a replacement for medical records.
It was a secure system, similar to internet banking, he said.
The idea was that patients could control the content, with guidance from health professionals, for ease of co-ordination between services such as general practice and physiotherapy or hospitals.
Mr Baillie said it would eliminate the task for patients of having to recall their health information, especially useful for the elderly or chronically ill.
It would also be convenient for travellers.
Challenges to implementing e-records included ensuring the technology did not put people off and that they were happy to participate, Mr Baillie said.
The aged-care sector is embracing the technology, with Garden Suburb Aged Care Facility and Belmont North’s Narla Village among the centres signing up.
The Garden Suburb centre’s care service manager Lyndell Cohen said information meetings for families were being held this month to seek consent to sign residents up through February and March.
‘‘It’s allows a more speedy transfer of information between the acute sectors,’’ she said.