Healthcare information systems are mostly recognized as the most significant attribute in improving US healthcare, and it also allows the reduction of medical related expenditures. By the year 2014, the administration foresees execution of a worldwide electronic health record (EHR). Healthcare experts and practitioners have the responsibility to keep information of the patient care activities that they execute. An excellent record maintenance results to patient protection, stability of care, evidence-supported healthcare and fine skilled practice. Keeping records allows and help in the inspection and monitoring which is important in numerous healthcare economies as well as medico legal concerns
There are proofs that entail an insufficient security measures that resulted in a range of data infringements that leaves patients susceptible to potential social dishonor, economic and mental coercions. Reports also show that patients are extremely worried in sharing information without permission because ‘leaks on medical information’ is one of the highest reported violations (Appari et al., 2008).
A study regarding Information Security and Privacy in Healthcare evaluated the present situation of healthcare privacy research and information security. It focuses on developing technological actions for securing privacy of patients when their information is stored, shared and processed as well as the effect of Health information technology acceptance on care value.
For years, the employment of patient medication record (PMR) systems in the medical field has been widespread, and pharmacy experts are used to computerized records to sustain the administration procedure in their practice. Electronic Health Record (EHR) allows a real-time access of information for clinical assessment (Carey, 2012).
EHR is defined as an electronic information system that assimilates information from compound electronic information systems to provide a complete documentation of personal health information.
On the other hand, EHRs hold susceptible, personal information concerning a patient’s medical treatment and situation. This sensitive information is employed for creating significant healing decisions. Electronic records have the capability to be distributed from various places. This issue brings the need for back-up, accessibility and support of the documentation for the development and utilization of EHR (Carey, 2012).
Framework of EHRs
The three major concepts in law for the generation and use of information of patient care and professional executions include the confidentiality, consent and liability. The three mentioned concepts emphasize the importance of EHRs utilization.
The necessities for the confidentiality in the NHS are explained in the Caldicott Principles and the NHS Confidentiality Code of Practice. Confidentiality is important in the healthcare profession including pharmacists as well as pharmacy technicians. The standard of confidentiality is incorporated in the General Pharmaceutical Council standard. Patients suppose that information of their medical conferences to be laid up securely, and to be treated in a classified way. Thus, all health professionals have the responsibility of confidentiality. They have to guarantee that the privacy of patient data is protected. Any transfer of information must be made confidential in accordance with the NHS requirements. The decision in sharing the patient’s information must be weighed by the professional’s duty of confidence against the need for the permanence of successful patient care, and the potential harmful effects to the patient. Information sharing must be made in the patient’s best interest (OAIC, 2013)
Patient’s consent must be obtained to store data about them that will support the given service. The consent must state the reason why the information is being composed. The General Pharmaceutical Council Professional Standards states the principles of consent. Pharmacists must look for unambiguous and knowledgeable consent from a patient to keep and develop their personal information for a sustainable pharmacy services. In an occasion when a medicine is distributed, medical professionals are responsible to create a documentation of the delivery.
The documentation of patient treatment and care provides evidences of suitable patient care in circumstances when accusation of negligence has been made. In the past, this has not been a main concern for medical professionals, but as professionals engage in their new functions, they will have to create suitable documents of patient care involvements so as to report for their professional supervision.
There is an equivalent liability related with not expansively documenting information of care offered and a simultaneous memorandum is frequently important afterward in serving to display that the suitable standard of care was offered by the practitioner at the occasion.
Another main liability matter involves the utilization of information from national care reports services. It could be argued that the evidence must be accessed for every instance that a professional conclusion must be made if the data is accessible in a standard documentation to avoid liability.
The subject of every individual identifiable data has a right to access that information as stated under the Data Protection legislation. This right of patient to access their personal record is in NHS Constitution. This right of access to EHRs by patients is advantageous to patient care and does not result to amplified litigation as confirmed by the evidences from the medical work. In many areas of medicine, triadic consulting is common. Triadic is a procedure wherein both the patient and the clinician observe the EHR on the computer during consultations (NPA, 2012)
In the occasion that the patient recognizes an inaccuracy in their record while observing the EHR, the pharmacy professional must apply their professional decision to do proper actions to right the document. The information will be validated from the patient (NPA, 2012)
There are different systems use to keep EHRs. These systems include Patient Medication Record (PMR), GP systems and a national summary care record. These systems are accessible in a dispensary or pharmacy. Pharmacy professionals are responsible to practice their own judgment on choosing what information will be available from the said systems.
In multidisciplinary areas, the power of pharmacy personnel on the execution and arrangement of EHR systems can be limited. Nevertheless, pharmacists must look for declarations from suppliers that the systems employed conform to the principles of the NHS Care Record Guarantee. The EHR information must be protected from dealings of non-pharmacist companies that can compromise the privacy and reliability and of the information (Cavoukian, 2009).
EHR systems must offer suitable security access and must consist of complete data set, with date and time stamps for every entry. The information must be sufficient to give the needed level of pharmaceutical care.
Electronic health records must be user-friendly, efficient and secure for the present integrated health and for patients to suppose a dynamic position. Therefore, as it is the patient’s accountability to take control of his health and guard the security of his or her information, it is the medical professional’s accountability to assist and rationalize dynamic patient contribution (Miron-Shatz & Elwyn, 2011).
Appari, A., Johnson, M. (2008). Information Security and Privacy in Healthcare: Current State of Research. Hanover NH: Center for Digital Strategies Tuck School of Business Dartmouth College Press.
Carey, C. (2012). Protecting Patient Privacy. New York Civil Liberties Union.
Cavoukian, A. (2009). Personal Health Information. Toroto, Canada: Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario.
Miron-Shatz, T. and Elwyn G. (2011).To serve and protect? Electronic health records pose challenges for privacy, autonomy and person-centered medicine. The International Journal of Person Centered Medicine, 1(2):405-409.
NPA. (2012). Electronic Health Records (EHR): Guidance for Community Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians. UK: National Pharmacy Association
OAIC. (2013).Guide to information security: Reasonable steps’ to protect personal information. Australia: Creative Commons.