In today’s health care system, patients often receive care from numerous providers in many different locations including their GP’s office, one or more hospitals, Community Care Access Centres (CCACs), or specialists’ offices, to name a few. But this information does not always flow seamlessly across organizations, which means clinicians may not have the most up-to-date information to care for their patients.
That’s why Ontario’s Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant (HNHB) and Waterloo Wellington (WW) Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs) have integrated electronic records from 28 hospitals, both CCACs in the region and Cancer Centres through ClinicalConnect.
This web-based viewer gives authorized physicians and other health care professionals secure access to comprehensive health information for more than 2 million patients, at anytime and anywhere.
Originally implemented within the HNHB LHIN by Hamilton Health Sciences supported by LHIN funding, ClinicalConnect was expanded to include the WW LHIN in 2010 as part of HEALTHeCONNECTIONS, a project that received a $4 million in funding from Infoway.
eHealth Ontario has also been an important investor in the ClinicalConnect, providing more than $7 million, which has enabled additional information sources, sites, system capacity and standards integration. In 2011, $5 million was announced to expand the technical infrastructure and to support the addition of 2,500 new clinicians currently being added.
Canada Health Infoway (Infoway) also invested another $1 million to enable health care providers to access the portal using mobile devices such as browser-based smart phones and tablets. This funding, which comes from Infoway’s Innovation and Adoption investment program, also supports the implementation of a “new results module,” which will alert clinicians when new results are available, allowing them to take earlier action if required, regardless of their location.
"The combination of a highly mobile device like the iPad, and comprehensive patient data spanning many hospitals through ClinicalConnect, brings effective, fast, secure and safe decision-making ability right to the bedside at any time, day or night," said Dr. Rafi Setrak, emergency physician, Niagara Health System.
In this video produced by the HNHB LHIN, clinicians share their experiences using ClinicalConnect and how it has helped them improve the way they care for patients.