Electronic patient records system in Hamad Medical Corporation, Qatar: perspectives and potential use
2011-02-21T12:12:22Z (GMT) by
Since the 1990 the use of Electronic Patient Records (EPR) in health services has become increasingly prevalent world wide. EPR has become an important aspect of the continuous improvement of patient care. Transferring all patient records from paper based to electronic is now a priority for many health services. The research reported in this thesis is sponsored by Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) to provide opportunity to explore the potential role for EPR in the Medical Records Department. The study has been designed to gain better understanding of the users perspectives with regard to the use of patient records. In order to analyse and understand the complex dynamic involved in the management and use of patient records, it was recognised that systems thinking offered an appropriate framework for this research. Soft System Methodology (SSM) was therefore applied to the analysis of the data and used to inform the development of a conceptual model. Using SSM in combination with the structured questionnaire survey and telephone semi-structured interview, triangulation of methods was achieved. Use of these generated rich data revealing for example the general dissatisfaction expressed with the existing manual patient records system, the lack of confidentiality, poor legibility, shortage of space and the frequent misfiling of records. The need to address these problems has informed the strategic plan for the development and implementation of EPR for HMC. The research has successfully addressed the stated aims and research questions and guided the formulation of proposals for improvements.