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Fierce criticism of lack of national electronic patient record

The failure of the Government to roll-out a national electronic patient record received strong criticism at the recent IMO AGM in Killarney.  

The Organisation passed a motion calling on the Government “as a matter of urgency and in light of the substantial risk to patient safety, to ensure there is a national electronic patient record put in place in all health services in Ireland”.

Consultant in Old Age Psychiatry Dr Matthew Sadlier, who proposed the motion, said that he was going to put this issue on the agenda of the AGM “every single year until it happens”.

“I am sick to the back teeth of having worked in the health service since 1999, of having health boards, HSE, Sláintecare, and something else and then something else. These constant reforms of the service where the simplest thing that needs to be done to improve our health service, certainly our hospital-based healthcare service, is we need a national electronic patient record,” he told delegates.

“That would do more for patient care, for improving efficiencies, reducing waiting lists, reducing morbidity than anything else.”

He recounted situations where patients could be in “community service, then an inpatient unit and later an emergency department and all [different healthcare settings] have different patient charts that can’t be communicated.” 

NCHD Committee Chair Dr Paddy Hillery said he totally supported the motion. “Introducing this would have significant benefit for patients, doctors and the flow in the emergency system and the hospital system in general.” 

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