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New Electronic Health Processing Set to Speed up Visa Applications

Collaboration between Australia and Canada has resulted in more than 100 countries now having access to eMedical, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship’s new electronic health processing system that enables more efficient and cost effective visa processing. A DIAC spokesman said that eMedical is an updated and improved version of the former eHealth system used to record online the health examination results of visa applicants who complete their examinations for both DIAC and Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). ‘Increased use of eMedical will result in substantial benefits to DIAC and our clients, including improved client service, enhanced integrity and significant financial savings,’ the spokesman explained. Australia Immigration DIAC has been working closely with CIC since early 2011 to progress this ground breaking initiative and reached the 100 country milestone in the middle of the year. The shared aim of eMedical was to increase the efficiency of both organisations’ visa processing, while sharing support and development costs. The spokesman also explained that it will make the respective immigration medical exam systems more secure, reduce the possibility of error, protect applicants’ privacy and save applicants time. Quote from AustraliaForum.com : “When you visit an eHealth or eMedical enabled clinic, the examining doctor will submit your health examination results and digital x-rays online. Your results will then be electronically sent to the department’s Global Health office for assessment. Cases are generally assessed within 48 hours, but most within minutes!” The project demonstrated what can be achieved in practical terms when Five Country Conference partners of Australia, the United Kingdom, the United Sates, Canada and New Zealand work together. ‘Ultimately, we hope other 5CC member countries will use eMedical to streamline processes globally for clients and immigration panel physicians,’ the spokesman said. The eMedical system was released for Australian immigration health examinations in 2012 and around 120 000 Australian health cases have been processed through the new system. ‘About 78% of Australian eMedical cases are now being auto cleared, with the results available in minutes and no manual intervention needed, allowing visa processing to continue immediately,’ the spokesman pointed out. DIAC is now working towards its goal of achieving 100% electronic health processing for Australian immigration health examinations. Shortly DIAC will roll out another major achievement with electronic health processing; the Medibank Health Solutions clinics and their regional partners will commence using the eMedical system progressively from the middle of July. In another initiative, DIAC will also release its new My Health Declarations service which for the first time will enable clients to complete immigration health examinations electronically before lodging their visa application to further facilitate quicker processing times. Information on this new service and other developments in the immigration health systems space are now available on DIAC’s website.  

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