Last month, I-TECH Kenya, in collaboration with the Kenyan Ministry of Health, launched a new document that will help standardize electronic medical record systems nationwide—allowing programs and users to more easily communicate important health care information.
In Kenya and around the world, health care organizations, care facilities, and local and national governments use electronic medical records systems to improve patient care and collect public health data. Updated, easy-to-use patient histories help providers work closely with patients to develop the best care plan possible.
When a group or country uses more than one of these systems, however, they sometimes encounter a communications gap. Without pre-existing rules, systems are often implemented differently and may vary in quality and design. Systems with different structures may have difficulty working with one another, leaving users unable to communicate or share data and skills.
Clear and widely-adopted standards can help, and I-TECH Kenya is at the leading edge of this solution.
Kenya’s new standards document, Standards and Guidelines Document for Electronic Medical Record Systems in Kenya, is the first of its kind in Kenya and heralds a major milestone in the progress of I-TECH’s work in the country. It lays out requirements for the implementation of electronic medical records systems in Kenya and provides guidance to ensure that the systems are implemented in an acceptable and sustainable manner.
To prepare the document, the Kenyan team drew from international standards, global best practices, the experiences of key users, and existing Kenyan standards. Successfully implementing the guidelines will require continued insight and support from the Ministry, stakeholders, and local partners.
As the country moves towards adopting standardized electronic medical records systems, I-TECH will continue to provide technical assistance to the Kenyan Ministry of Health and other development partners in efforts to improve the capacity within the country to use and maintain electronic medical records systems.