National Medical Record System Important For Efficient Transition to Universal Health Care Coverage

Basseterre, St. Kitts, January 23, 2019 (SKNIS): Chairperson of the St. Kitts and Nevis National Commission for Universal Health Care, Azilla Clarke, said that a National Medical Record System will be implemented as a part of the roll out of the Universal Health Care Coverage to ensure the smooth transfer of information between medical practitioners in the Federation.

Speaking on “Working for You” on January 23, 2019, Ms. Clarke said that this system will be a database of baseline medical information for each citizen or resident.

“We need to move away from the issue of self-reporting and give the doctors access,” she said, while explaining that this will help to reduce misinformation and underreporting of illnesses and will assist the medical practitioners to give a more informed diagnosis.

Ms. Clarke noted that the system will be both electronic and paper and a physical structure will be implemented to manage issues of privacy, data collection and processing. She said that for medical practitioners to gain access to the private files, written permission must be given by the patient.

She added that each medical practitioner will have a unique access code for the system that will permit appropriate oversite to reduce malpractice and misuse of information. She also stated that there will be legal penalties if persons misuse and release unauthorized confidential information.

“With this comes certain protections for individuals where there will be legislative penalties for professionals across the board,” she said
Ms. Clarke also said that there is a Grievance and Appeals Committee that will be set up within the National Health Insurance structure to hear any cases of misconduct or otherwise that may arise.

“We want to assure Kittitians and Nevisians that whereas we are asking a lot of you, it is to make the system much more seamless,” she said.

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