The Canadian health care sector is undergoing an exceptional transformation with
the introduction of Electronic Patient Records (EPR). EPR is now the bases for providing
health care in many countries. This paper addresses Romaonow’s recommendations on EPR
and evaluates both Health Accords (2003 and 2004) implementations relating to EPR. EPR
represents the core and essential component of electronic health (e-Health). The Romanow
report (RR) summarizes its recommendations into three major connected issues: implementing
health information technologies (HIT) particularly EPR, putting in place effective HIT
assessment practices and procedures, and integrating and enriching Canada’s health knowledge
base by broadening our health research capability (Ramonow 2002, p76).
First, the RR proposes the development of personal EPR for every Canadian (Ramonow
2002, p76). The basic rational for this is that the current and mostly paper-based patient
information is outdated, redundant, inefficient, and impedes research and the integration and
sharing of information. Second, the RR recommends a continuous leading role for Canada
Health Infoway (CHI) in implementing HIT, promoting HIT literacy and dealing with security
standards and privacy policies (Ramonow 2002, p76). In support of this, the report argues that
given out continuous resources to CHI places it in a better position to effectively lead HIT
initiatives in Canada. Third, given the intended audience of EPR, the RR recommends that
Canadians should take ownership of their personal health information (PHI). Also, given the
vulnerability of electronic information, proper security measures are needed to protect PHI.
This, the report argues, would require an amendment to the Criminal Code to make violation
of PHI a criminal offense (Ramonow 2002, p76). Fourth, given the rapidity of technological
innovations, the safety and effectiveness of HIT is... [continues]
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