Canada Health Infoway
Canada Health Infoway is an independent, federally funded, not-for-profit organization tasked with accelerating the adoption of digital health solutions, such as electronic health records, across Canada. As a strategic investor, Infoway works with the Canadian provinces and territories to co-fund the implementation of electronic medical records and other digital health projects. Infoway’s members are Canada's 14 federal, provincial and territorial Deputy Ministers of Health.
The use of digital health solutions is intended to improve access to care for Canadians, improve the efficiency of individual health care providers and make the health care system as a whole more efficient.
An estimation indicated that by 2014, 74 per cent of physicians in Canada have electronic medical records.
As of 2016, the Government of Canada has allocated $2.15 billion to Canada Health Infoway.
The goal of Canada Health Infoway is to improve health care and the health of Canadians by working with partners to accelerate the development, adoption and effective use of digital health solutions across Canada. Infoway has helped fund several types of digital health solutions, such as laboratory information systems, diagnostic imaging systems, drug information systems, registries and interoperable electronic health records.
It has been reported that electronic medical records saved $1.3 billion over six years, improved chronic disease management and improved communications amongst care providers.
In 2015, Canada’s clinical interoperability action plan was launched and Canada Health Infoway is working in collaboration with the health care community to drive clinical interoperability in three priority areas: medication management, communicable disease management and the co-ordination of care. Another goal of Canada Health Infoway is to help drive the development of consumer health solutions such as e-visits and e-booking through demonstration projects and innovation challenges.
In January 2017, Infoway set out four goals for the 2017-2018 fiscal year:
- Promote medication safety, patient and provider convenience and efficiency through PrescribeIT, a multi-jurisdiction e-prescribing solution.
- Scale and spread innovative solutions, especially in priority areas where digital health has demonstrated the greatest potential.
- Connect Canadians with their health information so they can more actively manage their health and wellness.
- Continue to provide thought leadership in digital health by influencing relevant policies and legislation, and leading efforts in solution architecture, clinical interoperability, standards as well as privacy and security.
Auditor General reportEdit
A 2009 report by the Auditor General of Canada found that Canada Health Infoway showed "due regard" for taxpayers' money in its financial management. Canada Health Infoway accepted all recommendations listed in the report.
Auditor-General Sheila Fraser's 2010 report states "Infoway has accomplished much in the eight years since its creation. Using the funding agreements with Health Canada as a starting point, Infoway developed an approach to providing for compatible electronic health records by identifying the key requirements and components of an EHR and developing a blueprint for the design of health information systems. It consulted widely with partners and stakeholders to obtain their input and support. In addition, it established appropriate governance mechanisms and developed a risk management strategy. It has implemented appropriate management controls for operational spending, although controls for contracting for goods and services need to be strengthened."
- Collier, Roger (2015-01-06). "National Physician Survey: EMR use at 75%". Canadian Medical Association Journal. 187 (1): E17–E18. doi:10.1503/cmaj.109-4957. ISSN 0820-3946. PMC . PMID 25487665.
- Finance, Government of Canada, Department of. "Budget 2016: Chapter 5 - An Inclusive and Fair Canada". www.budget.gc.ca. Retrieved 2016-05-02.
- "E-health records saved medical system $1.3B in 6 years". Retrieved 2015-09-17.
- "Canada Health Infoway, Summary Corporate Plan 2017-2018". Canada Health Infoway. January 26, 2017.
- Canada., Government of Canada, Office of the Auditor General of. "Chapter 4—Electronic Health Records". www.oag-bvg.gc.ca. Retrieved 2016-05-02.