Code of Practice

All reputable professions are governed by a strong Code of Practice – and the medical software industry is no different.

The below Code of Practice is an agreement between the MSIA and its members (and other software professionals who subscribe to the Code), which sets out the minimum service standards that clients can expect from members. It also outlines how complaints and disputes regarding potential breaches of the Code can be resolved.

The Code aims to:

  • build professional competence in the medical software profession; and
  • increase consumer confidence in medical software professionals – and the role they play in the delivery of healthcare

The service standards outlined in the Code are also aimed to safeguard self-regulation of the industry.

The Code is overseen by the MSIA Executive and Governance committees.

MSIA Code of Practice

The Medical Software Industry Association (MSIA) Code of Practice (the Code)

This Code is binding upon the MSIA and each of its members (MSIA Members).

Purpose of the Code

MSIA represents providers of health software to the Australian market. Our industry enables better outcomes and efficiencies for all parties involved in healthcare. The Code is designed to set quality standards for best practice in the development and supply of health software.

A strong code of conduct signals to customers and stakeholders that the MSIA membership agrees to a minimum set of terms and conditions which provides greater confidence and certainty for their interactions with MSIA Members. In addition, the code provides for remediation which is essential for the code to have influence and value.

The entire health software industry benefits when the ethical decision-making process is transparent and accountable to all stakeholders. Open discussions about ethical issues promote this accountability and transparency. Service standards outlined in this code are also aimed to safeguard self-regulation of the industry.

The directors of the MSIA are responsible for oversight of the Code. All MSIA Members observe that this Code is subject to the constitution of the MSIA and legislation.

The code has three sections as set out below.

1. General Ethical Principles
Each MSIA Member will:

(a) contribute to the best of their ability to the promotion of the industry and its reputation;

(b) use their best endeavours to avoid any action which could result in adverse health outcomes for patients or their clients;

(c) be honest and trustworthy in dealings with other MSIA Members and the public including stakeholders;

(d) be fair and honest in all dealings acting in a manner is consistent with the public interest;

(e) respect the intellectual property of third parties; and

(f) protect and ensure the privacy, security and confidentiality of data.

2. Professional Leadership
MSIA Members recognise and respect the following principles:

(a) high quality software products which are fit for purpose are essential for the reputation of the industry;

(b) actions of MSIA members should advance the integrity and reputation of the industry;

(c) accreditation and compliance which come into force from time to time both from government and from industry must be observed to ensure the professionalism of the health software industry;

(d) competition is good for the industry and innovation;

(e) members shall be fair and supportive of their colleagues;

Medical Software Industry Association                                                                                                                         Code of Practice

(f) it is important to foster awareness of the benefits of our industry to Australians’ healthcare and value to the productivity and economy of Australia;

(g) interoperability of health software is vital for the future of healthcare. The reasonable cooperation of all members to facilitate this aim both for clients to migrate their data to other systems or otherwise enable interoperability with third party systems in a secure and privacy compliant manner;

(h) health software systems must be robust and fit for purpose. Where minimum requirements exist, they must be met;

(i) ensure that legacy systems are supported for an appropriate time period and documented processes in place for the retirement of systems;

(j) customer support and training is required to the level required by the Australian healthcare market;

3. Compliance
This Code must be observed, and non-compliance procedures are in place to ensure it is a Code which MSIA Members, customers and stakeholders can rely upon. Members and other parties should take actions to resolve the ethical issues they recognise, including, when reasonable, expressing their concern to the person or persons thought to be violating the Code.

(a) Members should encourage and support adherence by all members of the Code and report violations to the directors of the MSIA.

(b) MSIA will attempt remediation with the parties within 14 business days.

(c) MSIA may investigate the alleged violation. Members should provide reasonable assistance to facilitate any investigation.

(d) Notwithstanding the above, MSIA may exercise any powers it may have under the Constitution.

Review of this Code
The Code is to be reviewed by the directors every two (2) years or where the MSIA members resolve by ordinary resolution (a resolution in which more than 50% of those entitled to vote, vote in favour of the resolution). This is to ensure that it is consistent with expectations of members, customers and stakeholders. Any changes must be approved in accordance with the constitution of MSIA.