B.C. asks for input as it improves health information management

Creating a framework for health information would make it simpler for the ministry to create electronic health records

Ministry of Health

VICTORIA – The Ministry of Health wants to hear ideas from stakeholders and the public over the next year on how to improve management, protection and storage of health information, announced Health Minister Terry Lake recently.

The ministry is creating a framework to establish clear and consistent rules for the use and protection of personal health information in the public and private sectors. As part of this work, the ministry is interested in hearing different points of view on health information and privacy.

“B.C. has at least nine separate pieces of legislation and many regulations dealing with managing health information,” Lake said.

“That’s a confusing and complex system. As the ministry works to streamline health information management, it’s essential that we hear from those most affected by any changes, and that certainly includes patients.”

Throughout this year, the ministry will hold engagement sessions with stakeholders interested in health information and privacy, such as Patients as Partners; Doctors of BC; the BC Nurse Practitioner Association; the B.C. Nurses Union; the BC Pharmacy Association; and various health profession regulatory colleges. The ministry will also hold engagement with the BC Civil Liberties Association; the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner; the Office of the Chief Information Officer; and health authorities, including the First Nations Health Authority.

Members of the public will have an opportunity to join the conversation through GovTogether BC, the province’s online engagement portal. The public engagement portal will be ready later this year for people to join the conversation.

 

Creating a framework for health information would make it simpler for the ministry to create electronic health records. This would make it easier for patients and their health care providers to access a person’s complete medical information, leading to better, more informed health care for patients.