TOPICS: Electronic medical records

When we approach any government hospital or health center in Nepal, we are given medicines through prescriptions and some pathological tests.

Those paper-based prescriptions and test reports are taken away by the patients. In the next visit it may have been lost or tampered. This is why medical records are important. The concept of medical records department is foreign to Nepal.

However, it is very essential. A modern Record Management System is a miniature warehouse of medical records where the prescriptions, test reports, medical history, physical and psychological examinations, medication prescribed, diagnosis and prognosis, result of treatment and procedure implemented, allergies and other risk factors, disabilities and many more are accumulated in one folder without letting patients carry away those details.

So, whenever patients visit hospitals everything related to their treatment are already stored in medical records.

The next time they visit the same hospital the hospital staff retrieve the medical file and after the treatment gets it again placed in the same place. Every detail of the patient remains safe within the hospital. These records are genuine sources of information about the patients. It can be used to claim health insurance, court proof and in police investigation.

Because patients may go to various hospitals to cure their illness sometimes doctors have to refer the patient to some sophisticated specialty. The patient’s medical information is in one hospital while the patient is visiting another hospital.

With this in mind, what is proposed are Electronic Medical Records (EMR). This EMR is the combination of paper based medical records and IT.

Here, all the medical information of the patients is electronically stored to the computer network, i.e., Internet. What we use to run this EMR is CERNER. CERNER is an integrated database with a comprehensive set of capabilities.

Through CENER health care professionals can electronically upload, store and access the relevant patient’s health information. Many countries including the USA, Canada, Australia, the UAE and Qatar have implemented EMR in their healthcare system.

The patient’s information can be accessed from anywhere via this. Ultimately, the overall healthcare systems become paperless. The advantages of the EMR are legion – the treatment process is fast, and a doctor can see more patients.