Flemish hospitals join forces in secure manner to share digital patient data

February 2020 Clinical Practice Willem van Altena

A big challenge that every hospital in this day and age faces is the exchange of patient data. Electronic patient files have rapidly become the standard, and Belgian hospitals are obliged by law to keep a file on each patient.

However, storing and exchanging digital data places high demands on internet security. After all, medical data is private and should not be accessible to everyone. A group of Flemish hospitals has come up with Nexuzhealth, a co-operation that enables caregivers to electronically share patient data in a secure manner.

Unnecessary

Being able to share patient data means better continuity of care. It also means that patients no longer have to tell their story over and over, and it helps in avoiding unnecessary double research, as well as mistakes coming from incomplete information.

With Nexuzhealth, patient files can be shared digitally, but also safely thanks to very strict rules about who can and who cannot access the files. Only caregivers who directly work with the patient can access his or her files. Depending on the function of the caregiver, more or less data becomes available. A specialist has access to a different set of data than a pharmacist of nurse.

Mutations

Every person who accesses the medical records is bound to a clause of secrecy. And every time the file is accessed or altered, the system keeps track by whom this is done. This means that sometimes a lot of mutations are registered, some of them by specialists or doctors, but in some cases these merely involve an orderly who transports the patient from the ward to the operating theatre. Data can only be exchanged when there is a clear necessity to do so.

More information

In a special brochure on Nexuzhealth patients can find information about the sharing of medical data.

Dutch version

French version

English version

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