More transparency, less paperwork and administrative work. These are the main objectives for the introduction of the electronic medical records in the clinics of the NPH homes. The idea of this project had already existed before and was gradually became more concrete.
During the preparation time, with the great support of Jane Collova, a reference software was found and its customization started. Jane has plentiful experience in computer programming and systems and has been working for NPH for a long time.
Fortunately the office of NPH Germany obtained a grant from “Vodafone ” (cell phone company ) sponsoring a German specialist for one year. So it was decided to hire an expert in programming and training to travel to all the NPH homes and to train the clinic staff in the use of the new software.
After the application and interview process it was decided to hire Karlheinz Staymann, who fulfilled all the requirements for the position, having experience in training people in Latin America in different software and being highly motivated to carry out this new project and to collaborate with people in the NPH homes.
In early 2013 the project was finally started. In March, the medical team, Jane Collova and Karlheinz Staymann met in Mexico to customize the EMR software to the needs of the NPH clinics. The EMR (Electronic Medical Record) is a free software that normally doctors in the U.S. use to manage their private practices.
Subsequently, a tutorial was compiled and then the test phase was started. Between May and early July Karlheinz Staymann was in Mexico to introduce the system to the local medical team. Nowadays the system is applied in Mexico and used to document daily and external consultations, inventory, patients’ weight and height, vaccines etc., and Karlheinz is still traveling, currently in Dominican Republic and then Haiti.
One of the advantages of the system is the direct monitoring in case of medical problems with patients without the need of being “on-site”. Also reports can be drawn immediately at distance. Overall we hope to improve medical documentation in order to improve the health of our children, facilitate work and reduce the medical team’s travels.
Contributed by Dr. Corinna Lawrenz, Regional Medical Coordinator NPH Mexico