Software Vendor Meeting - 14 August 2014

  • Time: 8.30am to 5pm
  • Venue: Best Western Airport Motel & Convention Centre, 33 Ardlie Street, Attwood, VIC 3049


  • 08:00   Venue available
  • 09:15   Welcome, introduction
  • 09:30   Action Items
  • 09:45   PBS Number
  • 09:50   Start Dates
  • 10:15   Hospital Medication Charts
  • 10:30   Morning tea
  • 11:00   HSD Community Access
  • 11:45   PBS XML Schema version 2.10
  • 12:30   Lunch
  • 13:15   AMT v3
  • 14:00   Restrictions review
  • 14:45   Brand substitution
  • 15:00   PBS XML Schema version 3.0
  • 15:30   Afternoon tea
  • 16:00   PBS XML Schema, PBS Software publication
  • 16:30   Meeting close



Please note: These minutes should be read in conjunction with the Powerpoint slideshow that was presented at the forum.

Agenda items for discussion

Agenda Item 1 - Introduction, Welcome

  • The forum’s purpose is to advise software vendors and other external stakeholders of the current information available, processes for PharmCIS and also the direction that the system is heading.

Agenda Item 2 - Review Action Items

The action items from the previous Software Vendor Forum were discussed and resolved:

  • Further discuss TPUU identification for all ready prepared items, especially for dangerous drugs.
    • No work has been undertaken as yet. However, the implementation of AMT v3 will load all concepts.
  • AMT implementation in PBS XML: provide advice on progress.
    • This will be discussed during Agenda Item 9 (AMT v3).  Also, PharmCIS requires further support which will be available soon.
  • Consider the timeliness of AMT releases and the inclusion of AMT information.
    • This will be discussed during Agenda Items 9 (AMT v3) and 12 (PBS XML Schema version 3.0).
  • Provide feedback to Software Vendors regarding the alphabetic issue with drug AMT listing.
    • This was completed in late 2013 and resolved by Nehta in the AMT.
  • Clarify business rules for start dates and publish on the PBS website.
    • This will be discussed during Agenda Item 4 (Start Dates).
  • Transition of start dates, provide list of drugs and date change.
    • This will be discussed during Agenda Item 4 (Start Dates).
  • Improvement of the change explanations provided monthly for the PBS schedule. Explanations should be easy to understand, include the summary and the element of change.
    • Release notes will continue to be provided. As much detail as possible is included in the release notes.
  • Develop formal process to deal with retrospective changes.
    • As the need for a retrospective change is so rare, and the circumstances of the changes so varied, a formal process cannot be outlined. They are dealt with on a case-by-case basis and the details of the change will be posted on the website.
  • Provide comments and concerns with current processes for PharmCIS.
    • Software Vendors have been making use of the Discussion Forum as well as emailing for more targeted questions.
  • Release PBS Software as Open Source by 2013-12-31.
    • This is subject to internal processes. Deferred.

Agenda Item 3 - PBS Number

  • 5 digit codes started being used last year (2013).
  • Item codes are now being sequentially allocated meaning that you can no longer determine which program it belongs to by the code however program codes are available explicitly in the data.

Agenda Item 4 - Start Dates

  • Problems with the text extract files, PBS item and Link Tables, will be rectified.
  • Start date definitions are published in the schema documentation.
  • The July 2014 schedule has been used as test data. This will be available on the PBS Developers website mid-to-late August.
  • All start dates for prescribing rules will move backwards. Most restriction references will stay the same.
  • The date for Production change will be confirmed on the PBS Developers website. Possible 8-12 weeks prior to the effective date.

Agenda Item 5 - Hospital Medication Charts

  • There will be two separate values for medication charts, one to reflect public and one to reflect private hospital usage.
  • The Streamline Authority Code will be on the chart as it will be  the prescription.
  • There will be no difference between public or private hospitals for eligibility.
  • Each prescribing rule can have a medication chart element included.
  • The definition of Facility is outside of the XML.
  • There will be no new XML style sheets.
  • This does not change the current PBS arrangements.
  • Duration of the medication chart – The Quality Commission will be addressing this during their consultations and trials.
  • This must be in Production for the March 2015 schedule.

Agenda Item 6 - HSD Community Access

  • MSIA is represented by the reference group.
  • New PBS codes will be listed under the new program (CA)
  • The Community Access program will not retain the business rules from HSD where the prescriber must have an affiliation with a hospital
  • CAR items – dual listings. These are currently being looked at by the Department.
  • The changes to the PBS XML Schema to version 2.10 will allow CAR drugs to be identified and provide a mechanism to convey program specific business rules. This is due by the July 2015 schedule.
  • The dispensing rule for Community Pharmacy will be added to the HSD programs (HB, HS) to better reflect the current business rules for prescribing and dispensing under these programs. This is not intended to alter these business rules.

Agenda Item 7 - PBS XML Schema version 2.10

  • The draft schema will be published on the website within two weeks.

Agenda Item 8 - PBS XML Schema 3.0 Introduction

  • Discussion for transition strategies:
    • What would be the sunset period for support? It was suggested that 12 months may be sufficient.
    • Health would verify the data from version 2 to version 3 during testing. The method used would be provided to the downstream recipients.

Agenda Item 9 - AMT v3

  • AMT ID’s – The introduction of Health created numbers will increase until version 3 is introduced into PharmCIS. Anything new in AMT that is introduced after June 2014 will not be mapped to the AMT.
  • It was suggested that PharmCIS have 2 fields – the first for Health created numbers, and the second for AMT numbers. If something is not mapped, the AMT field will be empty.
  • The question of whether the version number for the Snomed code should be included. As it is not a separate attribute, Health recommend that this shouldn’t be included. In order to distinguish the Snomed version, the separate Health and AMT identifiers should be used.

Agenda Item 10 - Brand Substitution

  • Currently, items with different listing conditions can be in the same substitution group and can only be distinguished from cross-item substitution by considering these listing conditions.
  • Administrative Advice (as “notes”) has also been used to convey information about cross-item substitution.  These were migrated across with the legacy data but this practice has persisted.  This is inconsistent with the intent of the Administrative Advice concept.
  • Starting from the November 2014 Schedule, we will be changing the way these groups are populated to create additional substitution groups such that items with different listing conditions cannot be in the same group.  This change removes the need to manually construct and maintain “notes” and hence this practice will not continue.
  • Once the change is in place, “notes” could be automatically generated based on the group membership, if they were required. The existing Administrative Advice conveying this information could be removed.

Agenda Item 11 - Restrictions review

  • There is concern that the restrictions table data that is published is aimed more for the prescribers. As such, the restriction codes may not be valid by the time the prescription is being dispensed causing the pharmacy’s claim to be rejected. Dispensers don’t have a view of what is current at the time of dispensing and need to maintain a history of the Streamline Authority Codes.
  • The ability to maintain this history is not currently supported in the XML. Could it be in the future? This will be investigated.

Agenda Item 12 - PBS XML Schema version 3.0

  • Quantity in terms of unit of the AMT that it applies to:
    • AMT is a clinical system whereas the PBS is a subsidy system.
    • Extra definition is required to determine the quantities, e.g. A pack of 25 may be listed as 1 in the data.
    • Jennifer Darby (Cerner) will email an example of this to
  • Document size: Do we keep the file as 1 large item, or would it be preferable to split it up into smaller documents? If the file is split, a manifest could include whether an item has changed.
  • Complexity: It would need to be able to have default values. This cannot be done with Boolean elements.
  • Health propose extending the groups, of which we currently have 3. This could possibly address the issue raised by Jennifer Darby regarding quantity definitions.
  • Restrictions: It was agreed that the semi-structured restrictions should be removed and a move to structured restrictions should happen.
    • The semi-structured data will not be retained but can be constructed from the data using an XSL style sheet.
    • XSL style sheets and text file extracts will not be migrated from version 2 to version 3.

Agenda Item 13 - Other business

  • Paul Storey (Health) advised that the style of the website would change over the coming months. The content will remain the same, only the design will be different.
  • The Expression of Interest for the payment mechanisms to support the Department is being run from the Chief Information Officers office. All enquiries should be directed there.
  • Data models for Text Files no longer exist. Will Health continue to support text files or XSL style sheets?

Meeting Close

Summary of decisions made from this meeting:

  • Problems with the text extract files, PBS item and Link Tables will be rectified.
  • It was agreed that the semi-structured restrictions should be removed and a move to structured restrictions should happen in the PBS XML Schema version 3.
  • A version of the AMT for concept codes will not be included.

Summary of action items from this meeting