EPAS cost-o-meter clicks up another $5m

“The EPAS saga continues with another $5 million cost blowout, a 6 year delay and patient safety further compromised,” said Shadow Minister for Health Stephen Wade.

An announcement to the Stock Exchange has revealed a settlement between the Weatherill Government and IT provider, Global Health.

Having used Chiron, the old country patient administration software for more than a year without a license, the Weatherill Government has now agreed to pay $5m for a license up 1 April 2020, with the right to annual extension beyond of $600,000.

EPAS was supposed to be fully rolled out by mid-2014.

Recently, the Auditor-General confirmed that the cost of EPAS had blown out to $450 million by the end of last year. Originally, it was going to cost $215million.[1]

With the Global Health settlement, the cost blowout has now hit $240million.

“Health Minister Jack Snelling made it clear in estimates this week that the Cabinet had not even approved the funds to roll-out EPAS into country hospitals,” said Mr Wade.

“Given the ever spiraling costs associated with EPAS there’s little doubt that the system will cost at least half a billion dollars when it is finally delivered.

“This IT system has been a rolling disaster from the moment the Labor Government shunned other tried and tested systems.

“Once again country South Australians are being treated as second rate citizens by the Weatherill Government.

“South Australia country hospital patients are now the only people in the world reliant on Chiron and will be forced to bring paper records if they need to be treated at a metropolitan hospital.” 

[1]AG Matters of Specific Audit Comment (Dec 2014), pg. 8