Effectiveness of Using Management Information System in Hospitals

Introduction

Implementation of Hospital Information System (HIS) is considered an organizational process achieved towards information technology within healthcare. There are different user groups within healthcare community which include; physicians, nurses, administrators, managers, researchers amongst others. All these provide required expertise and skills utilized in the effective management of health care sector. Since healthcare is considered an important part of the society, health care providers are required to provide efficient services. Research done by WHO (2006), reveals that hundreds of thousands of patients throng health facilities on daily basis, this poses lots of challenges to hospital administration since they are required to ensure smooth and organized running of operations. Employees within various departments in hospitals are required to manage and integrate clinical, financial as well as operational information. The manual systems proved to be time consuming and inefficient, prompting the adoption of hospital information systems (HIS). Following its adoption, HIS has ensured high level efficiency in the management of medical and administrative information (Winter et. al, 2004). Several health concerns exist among children and adults around the world. This calls for identification and implementation of appropriate solutions towards such health problems. One of the intervention measures could involve improved systems within social service agencies, health care providers, religious and educational organizations.

Effectiveness of HIS in management

Application of HIS within Hospitals has enabled easy management of data related to clinic, finance, laboratory, nursing, pathology, radiology as well as pharmacy. Hospital Information Systems have enabled quick access to reliable information concerning patient health. This is ensured through simple click of the mouse which also enables easy retrieval of information concerning patient diets and distribution of medications (Chetley, 2006). There is possibility of monitoring level of drug usage within hospitals hence prompting necessary and timely adjustments. Other important benefits associated with Hospital Information Systems include; enhancement of information integrity, reduction of errors which might occur during transcription and reduction on information duplication during entries. The system applies the use of fast computers connected through optimized network capable of ensuring high level Return On Investment (ROI) and effective service delivery. At the same time, the system operates on a centralized information system which enables customization of various specific requirements within hospital environment (Berg, 2001).

There are different kinds of HIS used in hospitals such as Nursing Information Systems (NIS). The system is designed to assist nurses in providing better services to patients; such services incorporate improvement of staff schedules, offering accurate patient information and at the same time enables improvement and integrations of clinical data. The system grants nursing department possibility of managing workforce through schedule applications. Such practices enable managers to effectively monitor staffing levels hence able to regulate more cost effective administrative services (Tan and Raghupathi, 2002). The NIS system also enable nurses to design patients’ care plan through retrieval, integration and analysis of clinical information prompting ultimate reduction in planning time and evaluations. There is increased level of accuracy in drug prescription owing to availability of references from electronically prescribed drugs (Chetley, 2006).

Then there is Physician Information Systems (PIS) which ensures effectiveness on physician practices. The system works through computer network systems and uses electronic medical records and electronic health records accessible on a 24/7 basis. At the same time, Pharmacy information system addresses various demands from pharmaceutical department such as allowing adequate monitoring on usage of medication drugs within hospitals. There is capability of supervising various medication-related problems such as drug allergies. Physician Information Systems are also used for the purposes of identifying nature of drug interactions and appropriate administration of drugs. Hospital Management Information system offers assistance to health administrators enabling them to exercise enhanced control over various functions within the hospital (Tan and Raghupathi, 2002).

Good example on application of information system can be drawn from Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) which developed Coordinated School Health model comprising different areas crucial to health and learning. The model incorporates digitalized collective strategies as well as activities capable of promoting health aspects within institutions. The model guarantees involvement of students, families as well as the community in health provision programs. Such involvement and application of computerized system ensures adequate commitment and support from the community which is considered valuable input. Contrary to computerized improvements many cultures have created their own ways of curbing health related issues which have proved ineffective to some extent. This is eminent amongst races such as African American, Hispanic as well as Native Americans (WHO, 2006). However, such cultural health intervention measures were found to be absent amongst communities such as those associated with some religious communities. Most of the interventions used in public schools have been found to be in-appropriate since most involves application of manual systems. This has made it difficult for governments to manage and control healthcare system within schools and institutions. In some schools such as those of Jewish origin, their belief systems as well as cultural behaviours totally differ from that of other populations (Berg, 2001).

Effectiveness of management systems provide solution to problems associated with healthcare in remote schools. However, effective healthcare provision cannot easily be solved through manual medical systems within institutions despite the fact that students’ level of awareness and behaviour can easily be impacted through learning institutions. Hospital management Information System (HMIS) also assists in times of emergency cases arising from institutions, since they operate based on real-time. This assists in case there is need for rapid responses. Additionally, nurses are able to up-date patients’ nutrition requirements and advise appropriately. The ultimate goal of such programs is to enlighten the community concerning nutrition and balanced programs contributing towards healthy lifestyle. Such suggestions and programs are in-line with healthcare principles which support the fact that everyone is endowed with the responsibility of caring for their health.

Conclusion

Hospital information system enables improvement in the quality of health and medical care given to patients. Such modern system allows development and enhancement of effectiveness within workplace. Hospital Management Information System as described provides various services enabling effective simulation, analysis and modelling of processes. Such management practices using computer systems ensures systematic utilization of resources resulting into quality results.

Before inception of HMIS, coherent management was non-existent hence issues of monitoring were considered difficult. Administrators were unable to keep clean and adequate records hence making it difficult development of various health indicators. There were cases on wastage of time, misuse of manpower and most operations were non-transparent and unaccountable. Healthy environment is one of the key issues requiring attention within communities. However, efforts geared towards supporting community health have become common agenda within most countries of the world. Despite these, there is great need in supporting legislative laws geared towards supporting healthier population.

References

Berg, M 2001, “Implementing information systems in health care organizations: myths and Challenges,” International Journal of Medical Informatics, Vol. 64, No. 1, pp. 143–156

Chetley, A 2006, “Improving health, connecting people: the role of ICT in the health sectors of developing countries a framework paper,” InfoDev Journal, Vol. 5, No. 1

Tan, J & Raghupathi, W 2002, “Strategic IT applications in health care,” Communications of the ACM , Vol. 45, No.12, pp. 2-44

WHO 2006,”Health information systems in support of the Millennium Development Goals Report by the Secretariat,” Sixtieth World Health Assembly, A60/22

Winter, A, Ammenwerth, E, Brigl, B & Haux, R 2004, “Strategic Information Management in Hospitals: an introduction to hospital information systems,” Springer Vol. 2, No. 1

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