Kenyatta National Hospital is scouting for donors to fund digitisation of about 40 million patient records.
Speaking to the Nation on Thursday, the hospital’s acting deputy director for clinical services, Dr Henry Kioko, said they have already engaged the Kenya ICT Board in the search for funds for the project expected to be complete by 2015.
“The project will improve speed, accuracy and will cover for the loss of documents which has been a problem. It will also pave the way for the automation of all services at the hospital,” he said.
Mr Kioko noted that the success of the project will boost the general health sector through better research with easily available data.
“We are counting on it to improve the speed and quality of research as researchers do not have to peruse thousands of pages to collect data. This is the only way we can keep yielding timely solutions to society’s health problems,” Dr Kioko said.
The pilot stage of the project is ongoing in the Ear Nose and Throat clinic and will have four million patient records digitised in four months at a cost of Sh35 million.
Improve service delivery
By Wednesday, about 1.4 million records from the clinic had been digitised. Funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, the pilot stage has been contracted to Techno Brain Limited and Coseke Kenya Limited.
Kenya ICT Board deputy chief executive Eunice Kariuki said the board is currently finalising the hospital’s ICT master plan to deliver fully automated services.
“This project is a sign of the vibrancy of the Business Process Outsourcing sector and its ability to create employment to the youth,” she said.
Ms Kariuki said the project will be spread to other hospitals at the county level to improve service delivery in the sector.
With a bed capacity of 1,800, 520,000 outpatients and 70,000 inpatients a year, the referral hospital’s manual processes have proved to be inefficient, difficult to measure, and prone to human error.
The records at the Ear Nose and Throat clinic will be in digital format by September this year.
They account for 10 per cent of a total 40 million records in need of digitisation at the referral hospital.