The Kerala Health Department is setting up e-health facilities in all government hospitals in Thiruvananthapuram, from the Primary Health Centres (PHC) to the medical colleges. The system makes use of the latest software and technology to streamline various hospital activities, such as patient databases, medical records and booking appointments, among others.
According to a statement from the office of the Minister of Health and Social Welfare of Kerala, 29 hospitals in Thiruvananthapuram currently use e-health facilities, but the Health Ministry aims to set up this system in the remaining 83 government hospitals as well.
Speaking to TNM, an official at the Government Medical College Hospital in Thiruvananthapuram, which is one of the most prominent healthcare institutions in the state, said that the e-health facility, was set up in the hospital almost a year ago. It has made life easier for the medical staff as well as for the patients, the official said.
“One of the major areas which witnessed a drastic improvement with the setting up of the e-health system was regarding doctor consultations. Patients are now given virtual tokens, so they just have to come to the hospital at that given time. This has ensured less crowding at the hospital,” said the official.
Other benefits of the system range from booking appointments and follow ups through text messages as well as doctors being able to obtain medical records of patients through their computer systems. Patients no longer have to carry medical records or prescriptions to the labs in the hospital as the soft copy of the records will be available in the system.
Measures to ensure that the staff and officials of the hospitals become familiar with the e-health system have already begun in the district. The Health Department organised a training camp on May 9 for the superintendents and the medical officers of the hospitals at the State Health Systems Resource Centre (SHSRC) in the state capital.
As per the statement from the state Health Ministry, the department has already collected the health records of almost 2 crore people from the rural areas of the district for the e-health system.
Minister for Health KK Shailaja said that Kerala is the only state in India which was able to successfully implement treatment and preventive measures for patients by comprehensively collecting their health details through the latest technology.
Recently, seven Primary Health Centres (PHCs) in Kerala secured the National Quality Assurance Standards (NQAS) certification by the National Health Mission (NHM) and one health centre from Kasaragod district secured the top position as the best PHC in the country.
The seven health centres that obtained the NQAS certification were among the 170 health centres in the state which were converted into family health centres under the Kerala Government’s Mission Aardram in 2017. According to the state government, this mission aims to create a user-friendly health service system in the state.