Aga Khan Hospital digitises patient records in a $10m project
The Aga Khan Hospital in Kenya has announced plans to establish a $10 million (Ksh.1.5 billion) medical research database as part of its efforts to digitise patient records across its hospital and outreach clinics.
The database will be built jointly with the American medical technology firm Meditech.
The hospital says this will make patient records more accessible and will support localised research that will inform the delivery of relevant treatment.
The move is also a component of Aga Khan University's global digitalisation strategy, which will see its seven hospitals and over 340 outreach medical facilities become completely paperless.
The new system will integrate evidence-based clinical decision assistance into doctors' workflows.
To trend patient outcomes across all of its locations, the hospital will use data analytics within the database. They can use built-in tools to assess which treatments are most beneficial for patients in their location.
"Embracing technology in this way reaffirms our commitment to providing excellent care. This game-changing initiative will improve patient care while also paving the way for cutting-edge research and comprehensive medical training," said Rashid Khalani, CEO of Aga Khan University Hospital in Nairobi.
The project, branded 'AKU OneHealth,' lays the groundwork for a standard-based rollout across other AKU hospitals throughout the world.
"With the seamless integration of technology into our healthcare system, we are unleashing the power of data-driven research and empowering our scientific community to accelerate medical advancements and address the most pressing healthcare challenges in the regions we operate in," said Dr Sulaiman Shahabuddin, president and vice-chancellor of the Aga Khan University.
In Kenya, adoption of Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems is still in its early stages, but it is expected to accelerate as more healthcare facilities implement digital health technology.
The public and private sectors are working together to promote the usage of EHR systems and increase patient and healthcare professional access to health information.
The Kenyan government has also aggressively promoted the adoption of EHR systems in the country, providing financial assistance to healthcare organisations in order for these systems to be implemented.
"We are so proud to partner with Aga Khan University and hospitals by providing a shared electronic health record to connect their communities," said Charlotte Jackson, CEO of Medtech International.
"We look forward to supporting the full breadth of their care equality goals and facilitating better care for all patients across Africa and Asia."