This paper is based on a study done to investigate patient safety in two of the largest hospitals in the Maldives, and part of that study was on challenges faced by nurses in using electronic health records (EHRs) to enhance patient safety. Patient safety is a vital component of an established patient safety culture (PSC).
This study was conducted among nurses who also work as patient safety champions/link nurses from hospitals in Central Malé area, in the Maldives, by using focus group discussions. A purposive sampling technique was adopted, and five nurses from each hospital participated in the discussion.
Key findings included poor usability of EHRs; importance of training to use EHRs; and importance of information sharing.
The implications for positive social change include establishing an EHR, which has the capacity to collaborate with the National Health Information Network while providing access to every patient in the Maldives.
EHR systems can help in collaboration among health-care professionals resulting in better patient outcomes which can contribute to establishing a PSC. Most of the patient documentation is done as paperwork in this clinical area; EHRs can contribute to minimizing paperwork and contributing quality time for better patient care. Establishing an EHR which has the capacity to collaborate with the national health information network while providing access to every patient in the Maldives.
Establishing an EHR which has the capacity to collaborate with the national health information network while providing access to every patient in the Maldives.
Nurses are the bridge between patients and clinicians during patient care and therefore require as much information as possible to improve patient outcomes. While the EHRs in these two hospitals were electronic patient records (EPRs) developed by staff within the hospitals for their own use, the findings from such a bottom-up approach to develop and use EPRs can be relevant, to ensure patient safety targets of EHRs are met.
Selna, A., Othman, Z., Tham, J. and Yoosuf, A.K. (2022), "Challenges to using electronic health records to enhance patient safety, in a Small Island Developing State (SIDS) context", Records Management Journal, Vol. 32 No. 3, pp. 249-259. https://doi.org/10.1108/RMJ-03-2022-0008
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