The Ministry of Health has narrowed down the number of companies that bade for the design, supply, and installation of an Electronic Health Record (EHR) system from 16 to 4.
Minister, Dr Frank Anthony provided the update during his insight on the ministry’s work towards modernising the health system at the commissioning of the $474.7 million state-of-the-art pathology lab at the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporate (GPHC) on Sunday.
The project is being financed by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and requests for proposals were published in September 2023 with 16 firms signalling interest in developing the system.
“We have reduced that to about four. They are now setting up their software and we’ll have a team of experts that will be reviewing the different systems and advising us on which one we should select,” he stated.
EHRs contain a patient’s medical history, diagnoses, medications, treatment plans, immunisation dates, and test results.
The electronic system allows access to evidence-based tools that providers can use to make decisions about a patient’s care, improve patient safety and experience, and facilitate better patient referrals or transfers.
The system will also centralise and standardise clinical data management within clinics, improve the efficiency and accuracy of documentation, and reduce delays in retrieving patient records.
Minister Anthony assured that the Mount Sinai Health System, which is renowned widely in the health sector, is part of the evaluation team to ensure that the best system is chosen.
“It’s not just about talking, but it’s also about doing and we’re ensuring that we have the best system possible,” he emphasised.
During the consideration of estimates and expenditures for the 2024 fiscal year Friday last, sums totalling $1 billion were approved to advance the EHR’s development as well as the upgrading of software in various areas.
Some $16 million will be utilised to acquire specific software for the Materials Management Unit (MMU).
Opposition Member of Parliament, Dr Karen Cummings had queried whether the digitisation of the records would include information on drugs and supplies.
“We have some money to look at that process and in fact, we had a consultant from USAID who spent the past year with us, looking at the system and helping us to decide on what type of software we should acquire,” Dr Anthony disclosed while responding, noting that the software will be acquired later in the year. [DPI]