Not A Fluke: Accessing Your Health Record Can Save Your Life!

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Would Segun Have Had a Chance to Live?

“My only son, would have gotten better health care and probably a chance to live had we gotten access to his health record much earlier than now” Mr. Ayo lamented to his friends and neighbours who have come to pay condolences visit to his family. “I don’t quite understand why it was so difficult to access his health record? Did it get missing?” Mrs. Peters, one of Mr. Ayo’s neighbours in her late 80s asked with a fray and rather confused voice.

Segun died of Appendicitis, a common and treatable condition. The passing away of the 17-year-old smart and promising young man who just gained admission into one of Nigeria’s Universities to study Computer Science is not just a loss to the family but to the nation at large.

Segun’s demise would have been avoided had there been synchronization of his health information and had it been seamlessly exchanged among the care providers that attended to him during the period of his ailment.

“We wasted unnecessary time and resources running repeated tests and diagnosis on him. Each new care providers never bothered consulting with the former for his previous health information. By the time my son was transferred to the eight health centre that eventually requested for his health record, it was too late. It took 84 good days to access, collate and document his health record after making 100s of pendulum visits to the seven other hospitals earlier visited. By the time I handed the document to the new doctors, after a quick glance, they handed it back to me and said, ‘If you had real-time access to your son’s medical record, and a seamless exchange among care providers, I believe he would have gotten a better chance”.

When I read through the pile of document, I was astonished because his records were filled with actionable data that would have impacted his care and created a better living condition for him”.

The Nigerian Reality!

A lot of us can relate somehow whether directly or indirectly with Segun’s case. The question it poses to us is ‘Could Segun’s Death Have Been Avoided’?

Would collaboration among health providers leveraging health information exchange impact positively on health care delivery? Apparently it is already a reality in some clime but can this also be a reality in Nigeria? Yes we are enthusiastic and optimistic people as a nation but what structure is in place to ensure this happens and how long should Nigerians wait? Can Nigerian hospital afford a standardized Electronic Health Record System (EHRs)? If we can, what will it cost to have it deployed and run efficiently?

These and many more are the queries running through the minds of some concerned Nigerians about the state of our health care systems.

CareMedica Solution!

CareMedica Systems, a Nigerian cutting edge Electronic Health Record System (EHRs) is pushing for the elimination of Segun’s kind of case by providing a platform for doctors and other health care providers to collaborate for effective patient care through its solution.

Driven with the vision to transform the Nigerian Electronic Health Information Exchange (eHIE) and interoperability with its EHRs, CareMedica is poised to provide a patient focused easily accessible EHRs and other innovative technology-assisted medical platforms to enhance the Nigerian health care system.

Without an iota of doubt, seamless exchange of patient health information saves!

Having The Key To Your Health And Well-being At Your Fingertip!

fingertipPatients will stay healthier if they can whisk out their health record history on demand; care providers will make better-informed treatment decisions if they can quickly review a patient’s medical history when it really matters.

Can you imagine an emergency situation that requires immediate attention, where timely intervention can determine the survival of a patient and the care providers are clueless about the patient and how to best offer care because the patient has no paper health record with them. It is better imagined than experienced!

I can recall one of my ante-natal visits to the health centre that I registered with somewhere in Abuja Nigeria during my early period of pregnancy. I was kept waiting for well over an hour after I presented my hand-held card to them. After waiting for almost forever, one of attendants at the record came to apologize to me that they can’t locate my file that will need to get a fresh one. It was not a bizarre because I had made only two visits prior the time and had not carried out many tests.

I cringe at the thought of that being the day of delivery, what lame excuse would have sufficed? That was supposed to be a private hospital where such negligence are minimal compared to the government owned Nigerian hospitals.

I once had a revealing conversation with a doctor friend of mine who works at Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH). She explained to me some of the reasons why it seems as though LUTH records high death toll during emergency. According her, most patients are rushed down to LUTH as a final resort during emergency without their detailed health record with them. More than half of the time, they lose those patients as a result of time wasted in creating a fresh record through rerunning of tests or re-diagnosing.

CareMedica Systems, one of Nigeria’s EHRs well trusted by doctors and other health practitioners is leading the campaign in creating the awareness of a Personal Health Record (PHR) system and deploying the solution to hospitals across Nigeria to curb this menace.

CareMedica captures and presents all the relevant data, records, diagnoses and advice of a patient all in one place. With patient’s permission, everyone involved in a patients’ care could access what they need to. There would be no need for repeated history and focus will be on the ‘new’ information.

With CareMedica, a patient health condition can be monitored real-time and it provides necessary data that could be shared with other doctors and care providers. This improves diagnoses and treatment plans.

Nigerian health care system will be headed in the right direction if they will just be CareMedica compliant.

You never know when you might have to go into the hospital- it might be emergency or planned, but with your readily available PHR at your fingertip, you are a giant step closer to protecting their most valuable asset – your health and wellbeing!

CareMedica Promises Health IT and it Delivers.

healthitIf you are still storing sharing and analyzing health information on paper, you may want to have a taste of the promise of health IT, but if your full operation as a health care provider or patient is being optimized by health information technology, I bet you must be wondering how the heck you survived without it!

The term “health information technology” (health IT) is a broad concept that encompasses an array of technologies to store, share, and analyze health information. More and more, health care providers globally and in Nigeria are taking advantage of health IT to improve patient care.

You are a Key Part of the Team that keeps you Healthy!

Interestingly, health IT isn’t just for health care providers. You can use health IT to better communicate with your doctor, learn and share information about your health, and take actions that will improve your quality of life. The myth of your health information being a secret has been leveled with health IT. Now you can have direct access to their health information online in ways that help preserve privacy and security. This access enables you to keep better track of your care, and in some cases, answer your questions immediately rather than waiting hours or days to keep appointments with your doctor.

What is in Health IT for you?

Secured EHRs

With health IT, your Electronic Health Records (EHRs), sometimes called “electronic medical records” will be better secured.

There have been countless of cases in Nigeria where people’s health record on paper got completely lost as a result of theft, fire outbreak or a few other disasters! That is a colossal loss that can cost a life!

So if you are still keeping your patients’ records on paper as a care provider, you are miles behind time, and please if your care provider is not recording your health information electronic, you are putting your health in line!

You are Placed in Control of your Health

One of the many advantages of CareMedica Systems, which also applies to standard EHRs, is the Personal health records (PHRs) feature. A PHR is a lot like an EHR, except that you control what kind of information goes into it.

Currently in Nigeria, less than 3% hospitals operate a PHR system. Patients can keep track of information from their doctor’s visits.  It also reflects their life outside the doctor’s office and their health priorities, such as tracking of food intake, exercise, and blood pressure, reminders to take medications, etc.

I believe that we can prevent another heart attack or kidney failure by optimizing a PHR.

No More Prescription Misinterpretation!

Only heaven can tell us how many pharmacists have given the wrong drugs or dosage to patients as a result of prescription misinterpretation or ineligibility of doctors writing. E-prescribing allows your doctor to communicate directly with your pharmacy. This means you can go to the pharmacy to pick up medicine without having to bring the paper prescription.  What a sigh of relief!

The sweet spot is that health IT is very affordable, much more affordable than you thought. You can have an EHR installed online or offline at your own rate and enjoy the CareMedica experience!

If you would just have a taste of the promise of health IT, you would not help giving yourself a knock as to why it took so long to make the switch!

 

CareMedica Understand Standards and Comply Leveraging Industry Best Practices!

As the tide of technological advancement sweep through every sector and industry changing its operations by impacting mostly on information exchange, there is a rising campaign by industry professional is set up standards and ethics to regulate the flow of information.

The health sector, being a very sensitive one is not exempted from this campaign as more and more IT expert that knows little or nothing about the medical profession are now taking advantage of their technological skills to build Electronic Health Record Systems deployable on various mediums.

The need to use an Electronic Health Record Systems (EHRs) for Health Information Exchange (HIE) is clear and its benefits are significant as study has shown that to better track and securely share patients’ complete medical histories, more and more health care providers need to participate in it.

According to Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), Electronic Health Information Exchange helps to;

  • Improve patient safety by reducing medication and medical errors
  • Increase efficiency by eliminating unnecessary paperwork and handling;
  • Provide caregivers with clinical decision support tools for more effective care and treatment;
  • Eliminate redundant or unnecessary testing;
  • Improve public health reporting and monitoring;
  • Engage healthcare consumers regarding their own personal health information;
  • Improve healthcare quality and outcomes; and
  • Reduce health related costs.

Knowing that EHRs has come to stay and its pros outweigh its cons, there therefore a dire need to set standards for Health IT in Nigeria in order to enhance interoperability.

A recent study carried out by Ehealth4everyone, a Nigerian digital health social enterprise in partnership with United Nations Foundation stressed on global health IT standards and the Nigerian need for it as well.

The study also x-rayed the standards already adopted by Nigeria and further stated the processes and steps for standardizing registries for Health Information Exchange and the potential roles to be played by Nigerian government ministries, departments and agencies.

This awareness is driving industry professionals to propose the implementation of best practice with respect to technology standards, records acquisition, records maintenance and management, HIE aggregation, information sharing etc. for Nigeria health care facilities.

As a Nigerian vanguard EHRs, CareMedica and its dynamic team comprising of medical doctors, medical lab scientist, public health consultants with 20+ years with United Nations, engineers with proven tracks and hard core software programmers and IT architects have synergized their skills to build a standardized EHRs fitted for Nigeria.

CareMedica understands standards and strictly adheres to it!