Associate Professor Farah Magrabi

Contact Details
+612 9850 2429

BE (Electrical & Electronics), Auckland, 1997; PhD (Biomedical Engineering), UNSW, 2003

Farah is an Associate Professor at the Centre for Health Informatics within the Australian Institute of Health Innovation. She leads the Centre’s research program on Patient Safety Informatics, focused on the safe and effective use of information technology. She has a background in Electrical and Biomedical Engineering and is passionate about ensuring the safety of information technology in healthcare through good design and the appropriate application of technology.

She is internationally recognised as a leader in the safety of health IT, and has made a major contribution to documenting the risks of IT to patient safety by examining incidents in Australia, the USA and England. Prior to her work, studies of e-health related harm were limited to case reports and single site surveys. Her research has for the first time internationally, systematically and empirically, identified the causes, consequences and outcomes of adverse events arising from IT systems in healthcare. It has resulted in a theoretically-driven classification of incident type and cause, and generated novel methods to detect and classify patient safety incidents making it possible to compare patterns over time and between settings, and to develop and prioritise preventive and corrective strategies. Her research has changed practice to detect risks and has shaped policy to address IT safety in Australia and overseas.

Her Australian group initiated, and still leads, the analysis of critical incidents and IT safety, and the work is translating to policy rapidly and well ahead of academic citation. She is the lead author of the only two papers cited within the 2011 US Institute of Medicine report which provide new data that e-health can pose risks to patient safety.

Broad Research Areas:
Health Informatics, Patient Safety

Specific Research Keywords:
Governance, Digital Health, E-Health, Surveillance, Systems Safety Engineering

Society Memberships & Professional Activities:
Fellow Australasian College of Health Informatics (2015)

2016 IMIA Working Group of the Year Award.
2015 IMIA Working Group of the Year Award.

University role
Associate Professor

Selected publications

  1. Magrabi F, Baker M, Sinha I, Ong M-S, Harrison S, Kidd M, Runciman W, Coiera E. Clinical safety of England's national programme for IT: A retrospective analysis of all reported safety events 2005 to 2011. International Journal of Medical Informatics. 2015; 84(3):198-206.
  2. Magrabi F, Liaw S, Arachi D, Runciman W, Coiera E, Kidd M. Identifying patient safety problems associated with information technology in general practice: An analysis of incident reports. BMJ Quality & Safety 2015.
  3. Wang Y, Coiera E, Gallego B, Concha OP, Ong M-S, Tsafnat G, Roffe D, Jones G, Magrabi F. Measuring the effects of computer downtime on hospital pathology processes. Journal of Biomedical Informatics. 2016; 59:308-15.