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Healthcare going digital?

I've had a brief e-mail exchange with John from 'EMR and EHR' (electronic medical and health records) blog in which he asked me about a point of making this tool in the times when healthcare is getting centralized health records (he wrote http://www.emrandehr.com/2010/09/07/niche-medical-applications-blood-pressure-chart/ afterwards :) ).

My answer (well, part of, I'm not a person who likes to be brief ;) ) was that most countries' healthcare systems are far from handling their patients' records digitally.

How does it look in your country?

I'll start. Over here (Poland) there's been announcements of plans to go digital for at least the past 15 years. And still, pretty much nothing changes. Every time I go to a doctor I need to bring everything with me (including a piece of paper issued by another doctor that entitles me to see a specialist). My medical history is spread across files (paper ones, of course) in every single doctor I've ever visited and files that I keep at home (and my previous apartment, and my parents house, etc.). If I wanted to check if I was vaccinated for some disease, I would have absolutely no idea where to begin searching for that info.

Something really amazing happened to me a few weeks back. My wife and I went to register as bone marrow donors. We had to give blood to be examined and answer to many 'medical history' questions. The doctor who was interviewing recorded everything using... a typewriter! And it wasn't one of those "modern" ones from 70's or 80's. When I asked him about it, he said they needed a computer in some other department (accounting? not sure) and gave him this antique instead. Where the heck do you get a typewriter in 2010?

Your turn!

Last edited: Sep 8th 2010, 22:41

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