Over a year ago, a Saint John based I.T. professional voiced serious concerns about the approach taken by the New Brunswick Medical Society to establishing its provincial EMR monopoly.
In his prescient comments to CBC reporter Jacques Poitras in January, 2013, Stephen Alexander questioned the wisdom of adding an extra-layer of business management to the mix with the creation of Velante.
Time has borne out his predictions.
Doctors, for the most part, have roundly rejected the monopoly approach, and have expressed shock upon learning of the exclusionary Data Sharing Agreement, the secret document designed to cripple any potential competitors. At last word, only 34 of the province’s 1600 doctors had started using a limited version of the software more than a year after the program was announced.
We should consider ourselves very fortunate that uptake of the Velante program has been so sparse. If it had been adopted by all eligible New Brunswick physicians, the cost to taxpayers would have been a whopping $19,000,000 in the first year alone.