Audit Office Slams E-Health System

(Postimees/Scanpix)
2/5/2014 1:55 PM
Category: Health

The National Audit Office today released a critical report on the development of the nation's e-health system, saying initial objectives remain unimplemented.

The digital prescription solution is the only section that has been implemented, with electronic health records, digital registration and other services yet to be completed, despite 15 million euros already spent, the office said on its website today.

One of the four biggest projects, the Electronic Health Record, is rarely used, with 92 percent of specialists sending no information to the system in 2012. The office said that there has been an increase in 2013, but few doctors are actually viewing the records. It is required by law, since 2008, to enter all required information into the database, but there are few sanctions for not complying.

Of the other services, the Digital Registration service has remained unpopular, as there is no central system for making appointments, and the Digital Image program, a database for medical images, has been overshadowed by a competing image database set up by two hospitals independently.

The office points the finger at the Ministry of Social Affairs, saying their activities have been "aimless and random," and the cost of the project has spiraled from a planned 2.8 million to 15 million euros so far, with no way of knowing when the pending projects have been fully implemented.

Speaking on ETV today, Taavi Rõivas, the social affairs minister, countered that the system has received high praise from the OECD, adding that situation with the e-Health Record is improving, as more health institutions are submitting data.


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