Prince Edward Island will spend CA$8.4 million to deploy Telus Health’s electronic medical record (EMR) solution to unify medical record-keeping for community-based medical practices across the province.

The new EMR aims to consolidate the various medical record formats dispersed across independent medical practices and was announced on Feb. 19. . Prior to adopting Telus Health EMR system, different medical practices in P.E.I used their own solutions with different formatting.

“North of roughly 95 per cent of doctors are on some sort of digital system across the country,” said Damon Ramsey, chief medical information officer of Collaborative Health at Telus Health. “Because those are separate products, different specifications, some of them have connectivity, some of them don’t. That is what the province working with us is solving for.”

Unlike patient-oriented medical portals such as MyChart, Telus Health’s solution is designed for the backend. By establishing a common electronic medical record format, doctors and nurses can understand the patient’s history much quicker and clearer.

Telus Health EMR has telehealth features built-in to cut down on visiting frequency and maintain social distancing. Ramsey said that through the new system, doctors can securely send medical information and care advice to the patient. Different practices can also share data with one another in a common format, thus reducing confusion between them and improve immediacy.

Patients can access their information from their caregivers by clicking on a secure tokenized weblink. Those with poor internet connections can assign a proxy person to communicate on their behalf.

Ramsey emphasized the new EMR enables better data analytics. Telus Health’s EMR employs a new data governance model that helps improve analytics and patient care. He hopes that through the new system, patients, physicians and government can analyze health data more accurately and take action sooner.

“Another big part of this is actually having that privacy by design component, making sure the system is built with best-practice security guidelines,” he added.

The program plans to go live this summer.

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