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Delivering Health Electronically Case Study | max healthcare

Challenge:

Neena Pahuja, CIO, Max Healthcare and her team are equipping the hospital chain with a state-of-the-art Electronic Health Records system.

A

By Harichandan Arakali

ny person who walks into a hospital for treatment of a problem, big or small, would want efficient and effective care and transparent dealings with the hospital. These two parameters are increasingly becoming the ones on which hospitals measure themselves. A recent deployment of a state-of-the-art Electronic Health Records system at Max Healthcare Ltd., a well-known hospital chain in the Delhi National Capital Region, underscores this point. "The EHR project was conceived with two major objectives," said CIO Neena Pahuja, in an interview with CTO Forum: "the first is quality of care and the second is continuity of care, which again dovetails into the quality of care. These are probably the reasons that most hospitals world wide go for EHR," she said. There is also an important consequence of achieving these two objectives, and that is charging patients right. This also helps the TPA (third-party administrator of insurance, for instance) and this is a reason, for instance, why in the U.S. there's a lot of pressure on hospitals to implement EHR because the insurance companies connect a lot with the EHR.

What is EHR It starts off from the point a patient seeks an appointment. The person may then get appropriate treatment

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cto forum 21 November 2011

The Chief Technology Officer Forum

either as an outpatient or staying at the hospital and the EHR captures every step of the journey. Some important information that might be needed for follow ups is also captured. The information capture is exhaustive, from previous treatments, medications, alergies, medications that the patient shouldn't be taking and under what circumstances and so on.

Right Medication, Right Patient, Right Time From the patient's perspective, the EHR also captures information on allergies, for instance. On the hospital's end, the EHR is used to store all available information on generics, dosage, any known allergies that have been reported in connection with those generics and so on. The system then points out, not in all cases but in many cases, any instances of likely allergies or wrong dosage and so on using the base data that has been fed into it. All this helps ensure "the right medication for the right patient at the right time," Pahuja said. "I'm sure you've seen a lot of hospitals have gone in for bar-coding of medication." At Max, wherever the system is hooked to the EHR, there are two bar codes. One for the brand, say Cro-

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