SA to pay $5m to continue using old patient records system

The South Australian Government has had to make a multi-million-dollar settlement with a software company to keep using an outdated system to maintain patient records at country hospitals.

The outdated system called CHIRON is based on the MS-DOS platform, which was invented before Microsoft Windows, and is still used at 64 country health sites in South Australia, including at the Mount Barker Hospital.

A statement released to the ASX stated the Government would have to pay $5 million to continue using the system until March 2020.

Within the agreement there is an annual renewal fee of $600,000 plus GST for each year after April 1, 2020.

Earlier this year the ABC reported the legal stoush between the Government and the system’s maker Working Systems in the Federal Court.

Court documents showed the licence for the product expired in March last year.

The State Government has been forced to keep using the system because of continued problems with the newer EPAS software it is rolling out.

In mediation earlier this week, the two sides settled the dispute.

Health Minister Jack Snelling was unavailable for comment.