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Why You Need a Hospital Information System (HIS)

By: John Bailey

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hospital information system

The healthcare industry generates a monumental amount of data, consisting of patient medical records, analytics from medical devices, and administrative information and documents necessary for organizational processes and to practitioners. How do you manage all of this data? With a hospital information system (HIS).

Hospital information and management systems (HIMS) and HIS systems are designed to connect siloed systems of healthcare institutions and streamline operational tasks. According to Digital Guardian, these systems include those that collect, store, manage and transmit patients’ electronic medical records (EMR), hospital operational management systems, and systems supporting healthcare policy decisions. They are all connected and communicate with each other through an HIS system and its reach extends to other areas of care and services such as telemedicine and e-healthcare.

However, with technological advances, many new challenges and responsibilities arise. Data needs to be organized, easily accessible, and secure. There are also multiple legal requirements organizations must adhere to, such as being HIPAA and HL7 compliant.

Benefits of Developing an HIS System

Developing an HIS system increases efficiencies and reduces many of the costs that come with information management. It also increases agility and the ability to meet ever-changing requirements of the industry.

Streamline Processes and Reduce Costs

The healthcare ecosystem is comprised of hospitals, specialists, pharmacies, clinics, etc. each generating patient and facility specific information. Without a central system connecting these departments, the data is fragmented and doesn’t provide much value to patients and practitioners. A centralized information system ensures seamless care by allowing healthcare providers to share information through secure channels. This connectivity improves analyses, diagnoses and overall patient care. Implementing an HIS system is also cost efficient because digitizing processes reduces waste and money spent on paper goods.

Manage Patient Medical Records

software used to manage patient medical records

Accurate patient records are critical for every hospital and healthcare provider. A comprehensive system provides access to patients’ medical records and histories in one centralized database. Having access to these records enhances practitioners’ abilities to provide accurate diagnoses.

Integrate Hospital Information Systems

Digital systems make integration with existing software possible, providing access all necessary data and documentation in one place.

Manage Appointments and Calendars

Digital calendars streamline and optimize the scheduling process, showcasing availabilities, providing access to calendars remotely, giving patients the opportunity to set and manage their appointments etc.

Increase Productivity and Quality of Service

The speed at which doctors and nurses can access information helps improve their ability to provide optimal care, addressing issues in a timely manner, creating positive and possibly lifesaving experiences for patients.

Understanding the Different Components of a Clinical or Hospital Information System

Multiple software solutions must come together to aid hospitals deliver the best care possible for patients and other individuals.

Electronic Medical Record (EMR) and Electronic Health Record (EHR)

EHR system used to transfer patient medical information between departments

Electronic Medical Records (EMR) and Electronic Health Records (EHR) replaces the inefficient paper system of yesterday. These records include patient medical information and histories, test and lab results, and treatments. This data is stored and accessed on a cloud and is readily available to other electronic health platforms and practitioners.

Practice Management Software

Practice management software has all the functionality healthcare providers need to run a successful healthcare practice. This includes software for managing appointments, billing, staff schedules, and other relevant modules that they need to be successful.

Hospital Case Management

Hospital case management software houses personalized patient files including assessments, medical care plans, evaluation, results etc. These documents guide a patient through the entire care pipeline and towards successful treatment.

Master Patient Index (MPI)

Many large hospitals need to have one database that can serve multiple different locations. The Master Patient Index allows multiple hospitals to access one database for a patient. This ensures data is kept up-to-date and accurate for all patients. It also reduces complexity because hospitals don't need to maintain their own database.

Patient Portals

Patients can access personal medical records, lab results, schedule appointments, communicate with their physicians and doctors without having to call someone or making a trip to the hospital.

Clinical Decision Support (CDS)

These support systems analyze data from various sources to help healthcare practitioners and administrators make clinical decisions with diagnostic information.

Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM)

There are multiple solutions to help patients get the best treatment possible even remotely. By utilizing wearable devices, sensors connected to the body, wirelessly transmit data to healthcare professionals. Several factors can be monitored including blood pressure, sugar levels, heart rate, brain activity etc. RPM make patient care possible without having to make hospital visits, ensuring the best possible care, especially in emergency situations, and increases safety for all parties.

Revenue Cycle Management (RCM)

HIS software can be integrated with POS, accounting, and billing software. A successful revenue cycle management process is pertinent to maintaining financial organization and efficiency and providing quality care for patients.

Healthcare Reporting

Automating the reporting process saves many hours of work.

Health Information Systems

These software solutions are revolutionizing the way healthcare is practiced. It connects various departments and helps hospitals and clinics save money, time, improving patient care and satisfaction and way more.

PACS Medical Integration

Medical information is not just in the form of text documents. You also have images that x-ray and other machines generate. You can store these images together with patient information in the database, so you have all of that information in one central location.

Best Practices to Consider When Implementing HIS Software

HIPAA and HL7 Compliance

best practices to consider when implementing HIS software

Security is the most important factor to consider when developing an HIS system. Being HIPAA compliant is of utmost importance. All of these concerns are covered under the banner of cybersecurity. Best practices include software should be backed up regularly and encrypted and a multi-factor authentication should be in place, as it provides an extra layer of security.

Layering your security and adequately training your workers is also a must. The software should also be HL7 compliant, guaranteeing patient information be easily stored, transferred, and communicated to other healthcare providers.

To keep up with increasing data and demand, hospital information solutions are becoming more prevalent as we transition into a more digitized world. Developing a robust, compliant HIS system is complex and a huge. Chetu’s expert healthcare developers have extensive experience creating software solutions for hospitals and will develop and implement your system correctly.

Disclaimer:

Chetu, Inc. does not affect the opinion of this article. Any mention of specific names for software, companies or individuals does not constitute an endorsement from either party unless otherwise specified. All case studies and blogs are written with the full cooperation, knowledge and participation of the individuals mentioned. This blog should not be construed as legal advice.

Chetu was incorporated in 2000 and is headquartered in Florida. We deliver World-Class Software Development Solutions serving entrepreneurs to Fortune 500 clients. Our services include process and systems design, package implementation, custom development, business intelligence and reporting, systems integration, as well as testing, maintenance and support. Chetu's expertise spans across the entire IT spectrum.

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