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Health information systems: international lessons

Staines, Anthony and Lyons, Suzanne and Doyle, Sarah (2001) Health information systems: international lessons. Project Report. Department of Public Health Medicine and Epidemiology, University College Dublin. ISBN 1-902277-53-8

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Abstract

At present Ireland lacks really effective and usable health information systems. The priorities listed in the draft ‘Information for Action’ report cannot be realised within the constraints of the existing systems. Our health information systems are not people centred; they do not facilitate assessment of quality; they make measurement of equity very hard; they do not support an adequate level of democratic or political accountability. The current systems lack credibility with health service staff, at least partly because they seldom see any results from them. There is no adequate system for analysis of and reporting on most of the current Irish health information systems. Despite these problems, components of our systems work well, and produce data of high quality. The Irish Cancer registry provides accurate, timely reports on cancer incidence in Ireland. The National Disease surveillance Centre does excellent work on the collection analysis and dissemination of infectious disease data. The quality of the data collected in the HIPE system by ESRI, and in the Vital Statistics system by the CSO are good. The national disability register works well. It is imperative that the existing systems are not broken in the attempt to bring in new systems. There are many different models in Europe and elsewhere of working health information systems. We would particularly suggest that elements of the systems used in New Zealand, Finland, Scotland and Canada could provide models for further development in Ireland. Specifically, New Zealand has a working model of an e-health Internet; Finland has a good model of a registry based system; Canada has a working model of systems using and analysing health data. Scotland has a very interesting system, with very close integration with primary care. This is a weakness of the Canadian, and especially the Finnish systems. Devising a system based on the best elements of these systems would produce a very powerful tool indeed. It is also worth noting that such a system might lead to substantial opportunities for Irish IT companies here and abroad.

Item Type:Monograph (Project Report)
Refereed:No
Additional Information:This report was commissioned as part of the development of the National Health Information Strategy.
Uncontrolled Keywords:health information systems; Ireland;
Subjects:Medical Sciences > Health
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science and Health > School of Nursing and Human Sciences
Publisher:Department of Public Health Medicine and Epidemiology, University College Dublin
Copyright Information:© 2001 Department of Public Health Medicine and Epidemiology, University College Dublin, Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2, Ireland, 2.
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 3.0 License. View License
ID Code:15041
Deposited On:02 Dec 2009 16:35 by DORAS Administrator. Last Modified 02 Dec 2009 16:35

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