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New blow to digital patient records system

Thursday 13 December 2012

Plans to launch a digital patient record system next year have taken another knock now members of the the biggest family doctors’ association LHV have called for a rethink.

Doctors are angry that health insurance companies have made supporting the electronic exchange of patient records part of their contract. Without contracts with health insurers, doctors cannot function.

The association has now delayed a vote in favour of the system until health insurers give assurances participation is not compulsory. In addition, doctors are worried about the speed of introduction, the security of private information and their role if things go wrong.

Legal action

Last week, a small family doctors’ association said it would take the four big insurance companies to court over the new electronic patient records system.

A major campaign began on November 5 urging people to give permission for their health records to be held in the new system which will be accessible to doctors, hospitals and pharmacies. The aim is to reduce unnecessary deaths.

The voluntary system replaces the controversial centralised digital records system which the upper house of parliament rejected last year over privacy concerns.

The new set-up has been developed by doctors, hospitals and health insurers and is partly funded by the government. Health minister Edith Schippers gave assurances last year that health insurance companies will not have access to the new system.

Earlier stories
Family doctors head for court over digital patient records
America may have access to Dutch patient records
Digital patient record backers reduce payments to doctors
New life breathed into digital patient record plan

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

The new set-up has been developed by doctors, hospitals and health insurers...health insurance companies will not have access to the new system.

Question: If health insurance companies will not have access to the new system, why are they helping to develop it? Future access? Laws change here in the blink of an eye, so be forewarned.

By Cal | 13 December 2012 12:06 PM

I understand that we would like to avoid unnecessary deaths by mistakes. I am a chronically ill person, went through cancers, half a dozen operations. I avoided mistakes by double checking my self before each operation and I can tell you that on all these occasions I have avoided death half of the time. Another factor are the pharmacies. Since I've been ill I have changed pharmacies three times. Here too, I double checked my deliveries. So many times mistakes were made in the medication's dosage. Then I had specialist prescribing the wrong medication. All those mistakes were human related. Every time I see a pharmacist getting a prescription double checked by a colleague I wonder what's the purpose? What is the colleague double checking for? Spelling mistakes? I understand that a digital system would eliminate all those error but no I do not trust a digital patient records system until human superficial and greedy attitude perseveres, let alone the lack of trust in pharmaceutical companies.

By FeliceB | 14 December 2012 11:01 AM

I agree with FeliceB. I am the partner of a chronically ill person. The amount of mistakes in my partner's EPD have been astounding and almost fatal many times. There has been no way to fix them, after repeatedly asking, because we would need to contact many medical professionals individually, none of which will have any interest to fix them. I keep a full dossier of the current medical situation with us at all time, because of repeated mistakes based on the EPD, which we can not change. I fight like a lion every time my partner is admitted into health care, and and get a lot of horrible reactions because of it. I don't trust this "new" system either.

By Quest | 14 December 2012 8:23 PM

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