Identity cards will be linked with hospital registration and treatment in Oman by the Ministry of Health (MoH). This step aims to improve and enhance e-health services across the country. Dr Qamra Said al Sariri, director of planning, Directorate General of Health Services, MoH revealed that through this linkage patients can have a centralized database which is accessible from any place at any time. She said “We are working on this project in association with the ROP. We have almost finalized the plans and hope to implement it in the near future. It assumes importance as the government is trying to link clinics and hospitals at the regional and national level”.
The MoH put another e-health plan related to the automatisation of hospital administration. Dr Qamra added “We have completed this process at all hospitals, clinics and health centers in the Muscat governorate. Other regions and governorates are in the process of implementing it. Necessary laws are being formed and existing laws are being amended to suit the changing situation”. In order to expand such services; MoH is cooperating with Microsoft Corporation, which has provided e-health solutions to many hospitals across Europe and America.
Shaikh Saif Hilal al Hosni, public sector lead, Microsoft Corporation – Oman commented “The Patient Centric System is an important milestone in e-health ICT, through which all information, including a patient’s medical history, will be available to the doctor. This way, a doctor will be able to treat more patients. For patients, the treatments will become more cost-effective”. Michael Sheldon, country manager, Muscat Private Hospital said that e-health was the next big thing in hospital administration, explaining “It is a win-win situation for both, the doctor and the patient. Besides making the treatment cost-effective, a doctor will be able to pin-point the exact cause of an ailment by referring to a patient’s past record. Private hospitals are banking on e-health services in a big way”.