The City of Johannesburg (CoJ) has reached a milestone in the transformation of public healthcare with the recent registration of its 500 000th patient on the eHealth system.
The CoJ has introduced an Electronic Health Record (EHR) System called [email protected] This is a milestone in the history of electronic health records.
“We are happy to report that this is the highest number of patients ever captured on the system in public health in Africa. This is something worth celebrating and also serves as evidence that the City is transforming the face of public health,” said the Health and Social Development MMC, Dr Mpho Phalatse.
In June 2016, the CoJ started rolling out the Electronic Health Record (EHR) System in its 81 primary health care facilities. This follows on the growing impact that eHealth has had on the delivery of primary health care around the City, and how it is making health systems more efficient and more responsive to patient’s needs and expectations.
Technological advances, economic investment, as well as social and cultural changes are contributing to the realisation that health and social development departments must now integrate technology into their way of doing business. The daily business of health and social development, in all its aspects – from individual care to social services – relies on information and communication and, increasingly, on the technologies that enable it, at every level and in every region.
Before the roll out of [email protected], all records in the CoJ’s Health Department were paper-based. This presented the challenge of multiple forms in which information was often duplicated. Health practitioners had to make use of paper when capturing medical conditions and patient information. To date, 64 of the 81 clinics are connected via the Wide Area Network (WAN) consisting of fibre optic cabling as the primary source, or radio link, and in some cases a combination of the two. In case of power failures, the system has a back-up consisting of generators, solar energy systems, an Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) System and electrical reticulation.
Phalatse said, “The deployment of eHealth can be seen as a paradigm shift with the aim of providing patients with increased access and influence over their health situation by emphasising patient authorisation, transparency and empowerment. The eHealth system will ensure secure storage of patient information, immediate transfer thereof, and better, safer, faster access to healthcare.”
Do you perhaps have more information pertaining to this story? Email us at [email protected] (remember to include your contact details) or phone us on 011 955 1130.
For free daily local news on the West Rand, also visit our sister newspaper websites