The much-awaited online delivery platform called the Electronic Patient Information System (ePIS) is ready to be used at the Jigme Dorji Wangchuck National Referral Hospital ((JDWNRH) by 18 April.
ePIS is a comprehensive, integrated Electronic Health Record (EHR) system that encompasses all aspects of patient information management including demographics, diagnoses, treatments, medications, allergies, laboratory results, and imaging studies.
Among many, the notable benefits of introducing ePIS is that it provides a comprehensive and up-to-date patient’s information which will help the healthcare providers make more informed decisions about patient care, administration tasks will be streamlined and the risk will be significantly reduced.
Furthermore, the concerned parties will be able to access and update records quickly, and providers will be able to coordinate and communicate more effectively to the quick access to patient’s information, thereby, greatly enhancing the quality and outcome.
The system will bring greater patient engagement and satisfaction since patients can access their medical records online, view test results and communicate with their providers more easily with the highest level of confidentiality.
Health Minister Dasho Dechen Wangmo said ePIS is the backbone of the medical system and it is not like any other system, but a system that touches the very core of humanity. So, the system will make a huge difference in every individual’s life.
After the system is rolled out, any individual will know what treatment they received, and they will know whom to see. It will streamline the system. Also, at the individual level, it ensures that every patient gets a timely diagnosis.
Health Minister shared that there was somebody who had chronic pain and somehow the health staff missed it. She questioned, is it the failure of the system or is it the failure of the patient or the health worker. Whom to blame?
So, therefore, this system is designed to ensure accountability and that such incidents will be reduced. It will also ensure patient safety and quality of care for the patient, reduce medical errors.
The system is designed to meet global standards for interoperability, security, and privacy, including compliance with the World Health Organization’s
“Personally, I have been requesting the team that the moment we launch this system, the patient must feel the difference. This system will help in providing quality care for the patient in time and in, itself, it will have a huge impact on the quality of services overall. To me, this is not just a system but a lifeline of the health system,” said the Health Minister.
The Acting Secretary of health ministry said the electronic patient information system, guided by the His Majesty’s vision, is to leverage technology to address the development challenge, and the launch of ePIS marks a significant milestone in digitalizing the health services to benefit people.
The Acting Secretary said that the first phase consists of Outpatient Department (OPD) services is ready, with the Inpatient Department (IPD), Maternal and Child Health (MCH), Referral, mobile app and other modules to follow in subsequent phases. It will then be rolled out in other hospitals in the country.
The team has been working tirelessly to bring the system to its more fragmented form and put an effort to make it simple, friendly and functional, said the Acting Secretary.
He said ePIS not only exchanges data with other systems but also integrates with many medical devices for data exchange.
He also said there will be challenges, but these can be overcome collectively as service providers and users. As the system matures and service improves, it will further expand across all the health facilities in the country.
The project was started in 2020 by ePIS project office of MoH in partnership with Thimphu Techpark.
It is one of the core components of the Digital Drukyul Flagship program that aims to enhance the existing health services by introducing digital health services. ePIS system is jointly financed by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) through grant support and the Royal Government of Bhutan.