Basseterre, St. Kitts, December 27, 2017 (SKNIS): Patients at the Joseph N. France (JNF) General Hospital can look forward to improvements in services accessed from the health facility thanks to the official handing over of the Hospital Information System (HIS) held on Wednesday (December 27).

The presentation of a giant key from the Resident Ambassador of the Republic of China (Taiwan), His Excellency George Gow-Wei Chiou, to St. Kitts and Nevis’ Minister of State responsible for Health, Honourable Wendy Phipps, symbolized the successful marriage of science and technology to augment the services offered by public health institutions.

The Government of Taiwan has invested more than $800,000 in the project, which spans from 2014 to 2017. Ambassador Chiou noted that it represents the first cooperation project between the two countries that combines public health with information and communication technology.

“The purpose of this HIS is to establish digitalized medical record storage in the JNF Hospital in St. Kitts and the Alexandra Hospital in Nevis,” he stated. “Patients who visit the … hospitals will receive personalized health ID cards combined with the appropriate software for medical information and the doctors’ notes from the surgery or consultation can be easily edited.”

This means that information can be viewed and updated in real time by nurses as they check on patients, administer doses of medication or other related duties.

Minister Phipps said that to date more than 3,000 cards have already been produced and that the system is designed to “protect patients’ data” and allow doctors off site to remotely view their patients medical records.

“It also allows us in the (health) ministry to keep track of health information because everybody knows that in a changing global environment it is data that drives policy,” she commented.

The local government has spent more than $1 million on the project. It also has been taking the necessary steps to provide security systems and legislation that protect the data from being hacked or used in an inappropriate manner.