Managing health information during disasters: a survey of current specialised health information systems in Victorian hospitals

Erin Smith, Amee Elizabeth Morgans, Jennifer Biggs, Ross Buchanan

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It can be predicted that a substantial number of patients will seek medical care during a possible disaster, placing an increased strain on hospital resources, including health information services. With medical records playing a vital role in the identification of patients and documentation of patient care, the ability of the health information system to cope with this projected surge in demand needs to be addressed. This study was designed to investigate the expected use of specialised health information systems for disasters in Victorian hospitals during such contingencies. Specifically, this study investigated what type of specialised systems hospitals had in place at the time and whether a standard for specialised health information systems for disasters was needed. While 79 of responding hospitals reported having a specialised health information system for disasters, 91 of all responding hospitals reported that specialised health information systems for disasters were necessary. All specialised systems were paper-based, and 94 were based on the standard medical record format and content. Finally, 64 of hospitals believed that a Standard for specialised disaster medical records should be developed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23 - 29
Number of pages7
JournalHealth Information Management Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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