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Electronic Patient Record System for a Psychiatry Unit in Sri Lanka

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Author(s): Shamali Dahanayake | Nimalika Fernando | Varuni de Silva

Journal: Sri Lanka Journal of Bio-Medical Informatics
ISSN 2012-6077

Volume: 1;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 205;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Psychiatry | web based system | open source | report generation | electronic patient records | Sri Lanka.

ABSTRACT
Electronic patient records improve the quality of patient care in psychiatry units. Many patients with long term illnesses have multiple patient encounters with psychiatric services. Although manual data gathering is available at present, data retrieval is time consuming as files have to be manually searched. Storage of past data is hampered by lack of space. We describe the first electronic patient record system developed for use in a psychiatry unit in Sri Lanka. The system facilitates an electronic storage of data and easy retrieval of information. The system identifies a patient by a unique number and allows different episodes of in-patient and out-patient care to be linked together.The systems' value is enhanced by the generation of reports to assist and improve health administration. Clinical care is enhanced by the ability to view the longitudinal history of a patient. Discharge reports, reports of out-patient attendance and reports of analysis of data are generated by the system.The follow up report identifies outpatients who default treatment enabling community follow up. This would help improve compliance and reduce relapses. This is not currently done as it is not feasible to identify all those who default using a manual record keeping system.Analysis of patients based on different criteria such as diagnosis and treatment will assist in identifying trends and provide a database for research.The system was developed using MySQL database and is hosted on Apache server. As this uses only open source software this can be deployed in both Linux and Windows environment allowing easy and low cost deployment. The system is web based and can be connected to a network expanding the access capabilities.
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