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HIQA Calls for Urgent Reform of Health Information System in Ireland

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The Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) launched a report calling for reform of the health information system for health and social care in Ireland. The report makes six recommendations across strategy, leadership, legislation, workforce, standards and health information infrastructure needed to establish an effective and efficient national health information system.

Recent events, such as COVID-19 and the cyberattack on the Health Service Executive (HSE), have highlighted the key role that health information plays in the planning, management and delivery of health and social care services.

The report outlines how health information systems — such as electronic health records, electronic prescribing, eReferrals and national data collections — can be used across the health service, from service users to clinicians to public health officials and policy-makers to help to improve patient outcomes, inform research and influence policy-making decisions.

HIQA has researched international best practice for national health information strategies for Ireland to emulate, with examples such as Canada, Denmark and New Zealand highlighted in the report. HIQA believes that a health information strategy must cover the entire system for people using all health and social care services.

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