Health details will be stored in central network

Kerala has bagged a Rs.96-crore project from the Electronics and Information Technology Department, under the Union Ministry of Communication and IT, for developing an electronic demographic database and a hospital automation system.

Announcing the project in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday, Health Minister V.S. Sivakumar said the State government would invest Rs. 9 crore in the project, while the Centre would bear the rest of the project cost of Rs.87 crore.

This is a first-of-its-kind e-health initiative in the entire country, which envisages a central data server which would have all health and demographic data of the population and which would be linked to the HMIS (Health Management Information System) projects of all health institutions in the State, right down to the level of sub-centres.

Electronic records

“In a nutshell, we are moving towards developing the electronic medical records of every citizen. A valuable population-linked health data base, this would be a vital record for the State’s health planners. It is an ambitious project and a major task for Kerala because we are being given the mandate to develop a prototype which could be used for the rest of India too,” Principal Secretary, Health, Rajeev Sadanandan, said.

The pilot project would be developed for Thiruvananthapuram district first and then extended to Kollam, Alappuzha, Idukki, Ernakulam, Kasargod, and Malappuram districts.

Two parts

The e-health initiative has basically two arms. A central data server, which holds the health data of all citizens, which can be accessed using the Unique Identification Number (UID) by all clinicians from any health institution in the network.

The second part of the project is the computerisation of all health institutions to link all wings inside a hospital, making hospital administration and processes easy for a patient.