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Dubai's health ministry goes IT holistic

Dubai's Department of Health and Medical Services (DOHMS) has implemented an advanced lab system as part of it's new Integrated Healthcare Information Project (IHIS).

Dubai's Department of Health and Medical Services (DOHMS) has implemented an advanced lab System as part of it's new Integrated Healthcare Information Project (IHIS). The new system was implemented by the Dubai-based Al Babtain group's healthcare division.

As part of phase II of the IHIS project, DOHMS has implemented the physician order communication and the advanced 'lab system'. The new lab system allows networking and system integration of Dubai's four major public hospitals and 20 healthcare centres with DOHMS to provide centralised laboratory services and information transfer between the hospitals and healthcare centres.

The lab solution, which went live recently, was developed by Misys Laboratory's lab information system, which manages complete specimen data from requisition entry to final cumulative report production.

"The new system provides easy access to all patient information without any loss of time or money. Urgent sample processing can be delivered to the hospitals and clinics by 30 to 60 minutes earlier, while routine lab work done for the day is available for physician's viewing on the same day," says Qadi Muroushed, director general, DOHMS.

Under the new lab system, each time a patient visits one of the four participating hospitals or any of the twenty healthcare centres, his medical history file is automatically updated electronically to the lab's central database, which is linked to the four hospital's outpatient clinics and health care centres. Lab testing orders are placed electronically through the HIS system which are passed through an electronic interface to the lab system.

This reduces the time it took earlier to get the required test requests to the lab. The test results are also automatically updated to the central database, making them accessible to all the hospitals and healthcare centres simultaneously. Lab instruments, now download the test request directly from the system, reducing the workload on technicians from programming the instruments manually.

In the previous system, tests were dispatched the next day which, caused delay in emergency medical cases.

"We found that Misys Laboratory provided the most appropriate solution because it allows clients to create a customised laboratory system. A total of 44 lab instruments are interfaced with the system while the software has also been parameterised. We have set up a 24 hour command centre to address any problems," explains Amr Mostafa, general manager of Al Babtain Group's healthcare division.

The division also undertook training of over 400 of it's staff members on the system including project training, core training, blood bank training, customised interface training and training on the internet.

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