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The (Missing?) Role of Health Information Systems (HIS) in Patient Care Coordination and Continuity (PCCC): The Case of Uganda

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Part of the Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering book series (LNICST, volume 275)

Abstract

In Uganda, patients receive care from different health facilities. However, most facilities struggle to exchange patient information across boundaries because their health information systems (HIS) operate in silos. Yet to meet the needs of a patient who receives care from different health facilities the participating facilities ought to collaborate, share and exchange patient information in order to enhance patient care coordination and continuity (PCCC) across the continuum of care. Using qualitative interviews we examine five HIS to investigate the problematic issues that could be raised during HIS active involvement in PCCC across the continuum of care. Results highly indicate that the existing HIS in the country do not enhance PCCC, and below are some of the challenges realized: interoperability objective not given priority during system design, HIS operating in silos, lack of a national standard for the patient record, health facilities exercising ownership of the data and other non-technical challenges. The main implication of these findings is that focusing on the interoperability objective as a design requirement during HIS implementation would potentially repress all other challenges and revive the active role of HIS involvement in PCCC.

Keywords

Health information systems Patient care coordination and continuity 

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Copyright information

© ICST Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.AITUniversity of GothenburgGothenburgSweden
  2. 2.COCISMakerere UniversityKampalaUganda

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