Improving Quality of Services through Use of an Integrated Patient Records System at Al-Mulhaq Primary Health Care Clinic, Karbala, Iraq

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The USAID Primary Health Care Project in Iraq (PHCPI) is collaborating with the Iraqi Ministry of Health (MOH) to improve access to and quality of primary health care (PHC) services throughout the country. A major component of the project’s work over the last three years has been to introduce an integrated PHC patient records system. Under the former system, each vertical intervention resulted in its own patient record kept separately, making it difficult for health care workers to gain a comprehensive view of the patient in front of them. The new paper-based system reduces the number of records from more than 140 to just 38, thereby lessening the human resources and time needed for entry and archiving of patient data, and greatly improving workflow at the PHC level. By presenting health care staff with a complete view of a patient’s health record, the new system is also designed to reduce medical errors and improves the quality of care provided.

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