Indonesia has made the nation’s healthcare facilities transition from physical to electronic medical records mandatory until December 31, 2023. This comes as Southeast Asia’s largest population enacted a ministerial regulation on medical records late last month.
According to Indonesia’s Health Ministry press statement dated September 9, the ministerial regulation serves as a supporting regulatory framework for implementing health technology transformation – one of Indonesia’s health transformation pillars.
“The Health Ministry is aware of the developments of digital technology within society, which has resulted in the transformation of health services digitisation so that medical records need to be done electronically with the principles of data and information security and confidentiality,” said Setiaji, chief of the Digital Transformation Office under the ministry, in a September 9 virtual press conference.
WHAT IT DOES
The statement also said the country’s healthcare facilities would need to be integrated with the SATUSEHAT platform developed by the Health Ministry, which aims to integrate around 8,000 such facilities by the end of this year. Patients will also have the right to receive their EMR, while referral facilities are able to access the records if patients consent.
“This year, we will map all health facilities based on the Digital Maturity Index,” Setiaji said.
“It will be known which health facilities are ready or not. There will be levels later, and then from there we use it to implement this policy.”
WHY IT MATTERS
The Health Ministry this month listed four benefits of EMR for the public on its official Twitter page.
In an infographic tweeted on September 11, the ministry wrote one of the advantages would be an improvement in service quality; digital forms allowed people to obtain a coherent diagnosis that did not require any repetition – unlike paper-based records.
Another advantage would be time, cost and manpower efficiency, while the third would be easier access to the government’s health programmes thanks to data integration made possible with the intiative.
Finally, the EMR would help “realise a strong national health system” in Indonesia.
“Later on, electronic medical records will be integrated with the PeduliLindungi application, so that [the data] can be accessed anywhere and anytime, even for the next 25 years,” the Health Ministry said in a September 11 tweet.
Initially created as an official COVID-19 tracking platform, PeduliLindungi is being developed as a citizen health app.
ON THE RECORD
In the same statement, Setiaji said the Health Ministry would help facilitate the digitalisation of the nation’s community health centres – locally known as puskesmas – whose staff do not have the necessary skills to do so.
Meanwhile, he added hospitals would not need to hire more staff members because doctors or nurses would be able to input the patients’ diagnosis results into the digital systems.