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CLIENT CASE STUDY


A NATION EMBRACES ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORDS

How digital research tools and records benefit Singapore patients

Overview

To improve healthcare quality for all residents, increase patient safety, lower healthcare costs and develop more effective health policies, Singapore’s Ministry of Health (MOH) created the National Electronic Health Record (NEHR) vision— “One Singaporean, One Health Record”— that allows patient health records to be shared across the nation’s healthcare ecosystem. In 2009, MOH Holdings (MOHH) initiated the project to develop the NEHR system.

MOHH initially engaged Accenture to help develop an architecture blueprint for the NEHR system that detailed the business, information, application and technology architectures. MOHH selected Accenture because we brought relevant expertise and demonstrated success in projects of similar scale and complexity.

In 2011, Accenture and MOHH began deploying the NEHR to provide clinicians with a summary care record for each patient including problem lists, medications, discharge and event summaries, allergies, immunizations, investigations, and procedures.

Opportunity

MOHH is the holding company of Singapore’s public healthcare assets. It also undertakes strategic initiatives for the country’s Ministry of Health and public healthcare institutions. These include managing the training and employment of junior doctors; recruiting of healthcare staff and providing corporate advisory services and support to Singapore’s public health system.

In 2009, MOHH initiated the project to develop a NEHR system for Singapore. The vision of "One Singaporean, One Health Record" will result in a single, unified health record for each patient, providing clinicians with more timely and accurate health information at the point of care to support effective prevention, diagnosis and management of illness.

This e-Health reform program also aims to contribute to greater efficiency and cost effectiveness in healthcare service delivery.

Solution

MOHH initially engaged Accenture to help develop an architecture blueprint for the NEHR system and in 2011 Accenture and MOHH began deploying the NEHR.

Accenture’s health and technical specialists provided program, project and release management, and integrated the underlying applications that made up the NEHR system. They also assessed the functionality the system needed to provide immediately and in the longer term.

Working together, Accenture and MOHH created the NEHR system using a common application architecture, as well as common data standards and privacy and security guidelines.

Accenture staff in Singapore, Bengaluru and Prague used Accenture project methodologies and program management tools to complete the technical build of the national system within 10 months. Accenture provided the right mix of technical, business and clinical expertise and worked with MOHH to help deliver the NEHR system.

The Accenture team includes Oracle, Orion Health, Initiate (IBM) and Hewlett-Packard

Results

The first phase of the NEHR system went live in April 2011 and included putting in place the entire technical solution, all fully tested and approved physical system components and data center equipment. This was followed by the synchronization and integration of the NEHR system with existing legacy systems. The long-term goal of the NEHR is to allow primary-, acute- and community-care clinicians access to shared clinical data that help enhance medical treatment and improve patient safety and could in the future help analyze health trends and better manage disease.

This program is revolutionizing healthcare services in Singapore. According to Dr. Sarah Muttitt, MOHH chief information officer, information systems division, the goal is for all Singapore health organizations to have real-time clinical information for treating patients. “This milestone represents a significant step towards achieving our vision,” said Muttitt.

By June 2012, clinicians from all public healthcare institutions, selected community hospitals and general practitioners will have access to the NEHR system. The NEHR will help provide the right information at the right time to assist with the development of diagnosis and treatment plans, and help eliminate duplicate tests and medication errors.

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