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Digitise Your Medical Records: What is it and Why is it Important?

The Indian government has recently rolled out the Ayushman Bharat Digital Health Mission (ABDHM), which aligns with the mission to revolutionise India's healthcare sector through digital transformation. This initiative will establish digital health IDs for all Indian citizens, providing hospitals, medical insurance companies and individuals easy access to their health records. The digital health ID will be a comprehensive repository of an individual's health information, including past medical diagnoses, conditions, and treatment.

This has increased the importance of digitised medical records for the welfare of both the healthcare professionals and patients.

What are Digitised Medical Records?

Digitised medical records are essential for healthcare systems to ensure efficiency, especially during and after the onset of the COVID pandemic. It involves storing patient details in software, eliminating the need for record-keeping in physical files. This brings multiple benefits to health professionals, such as accessing medical records for further treatments, making insurance claims, and guaranteeing the confidentiality of all patient information, diagnosis and treatment details. Many countries have already made EMRs (Electronic Medical Records) mandatory for health professionals, emphasising the importance of digitisation and paper charting in healthcare.

But why is this sudden technology dependence important?

Why Should You Digitise Medical Records?

  1. Have Access to Health Data Anytime, Anywhere

When you use a cloud storage personal health record app to track all your health records and previous doctor check-ups, you are gaining access to a lifetime availability of documents. Since they will be stored online, you don’t have to worry about conducting a search operation for your next doctor's visit. With digitised health records, you can access your previous records and medical history any time of the day and anywhere.

  1. Avoid Carrying Multiple Files

With PHR app like Health-e, you don’t need to worry about bringing ten other files with different prescriptions and medical data with you at every doctor's visit. The introduction of digital technologies has made it easier for doctors to access patient data whenever necessary, which can be invaluable in cases where the treatment needs urgent attention or where critical decisions need to be made quickly.

  1. Easy Health Information Maintenance

The healthcare sector is constantly dealing with patients. The sheer volume of data created by a single healthcare professional, let alone the countless practitioners in a single state, can be immense and not feasible to store physically.

Digitisation of medical records offers a solution to this problem, providing a secure and automated way to store all patient data, reports, prescriptions, etc., in one place, without the need to search elsewhere. Additionally, digitising medical records removes the risk of potential damage to physical copies.

  1. Increases the Lifespan of Your Health Records

PHR apps store data on cloud storage that helps you keep your health records for longer. Earlier, if you lost a file or some important medical report, it would get challenging to recover it, but the digitalisation of vital records has made it possible to increase the lifespan of your medical records.

  1. Doctor Gain Accurate Information About the Patient

The accuracy of the digital world is far greater than manual data management. Hospital document digitisation is an ideal way to ensure the accuracy of patient data and to eliminate the risk of mistakes or duplicates, which can be potentially harmful to patients and their treatment. This is being achieved through advanced features in the digital records, which alert for any duplicates or incomplete information.

Electronic documents and digitised medical records guarantee fewer misunderstandings and are accepted globally, which makes it easier for patients to move their medical records around as necessary. This further ensures that accuracy and precision are maintained when it comes to their medical history.

  1. More Effective Diagnosis

Accurate medical records are essential for doctors to provide better care. Digital health records give doctors access to the patient's complete medical history, including ongoing medications and allergies. This allows the doctor to make informed decisions and warn of potential conflicts and risks when introducing new medicines. Access to electronic health records provides the necessary information for doctors to provide effective treatment.

Bottom Line

The National Digital Health Mission (NDHM) has identified the need for a unique Health ID to create more efficient practices in the healthcare system. To ensure privacy and consent, a detailed framework must be established to mitigate potential security risks. Access to healthcare records must always be done with the patient's consent. For the NDHM to succeed on a national level, the government must ensure its proper execution.

Author Bio:

Jigar Patel is the Founder of Health-e, a HealthTech app that simplifies health records management along with providing personalized and preventative healthcare solutions. Although he has 20+ years of operations and management experience in the EPC domain, Jigar’s true passion lies in making healthcare simpler, faster and more accessible for doctors and patients alike. He strongly believes that people need to be empowered to participate in their own healthcare and is constantly thinking of ways to build this into his app. He loves to keep things simple be it in life, product design, his work or the content he develops. Being married for 10 years and having 2 kids have taught him that perspective matters, so you can always count on him to share new perspectives on various topics.

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