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Medication management

Infoway inks deals for Drug Information Systems

TORONTO – Canada Health Infoway has negotiated preferential conditions and pricing with Emergis and IBM for Drug Information Systems. The Canada-wide agreements, designed to accelerate the implementation of electronic health records, will make it simpler for provinces and territories to acquire Drug Information Systems, which help reduce medication errors.

“These agreements help provinces, territories and health regions reduce the cost and risk of implementing tools to improve healthcare quality and safety,” said Richard Alvarez, Infoway’s president and CEO.

Drug Information Systems give authorized healthcare professionals – such as doctors, nurses and pharmacists – confidential access to the medication records of their patients. “This helps care professionals select the best medication to avoid drug interactions and duplications of therapy, which can improve treatment and even save lives,” added Alvarez. The technology also facilitates a team approach to healthcare – ensuring that specialists, GPs, nurses and other care providers treating a patient have accurate and up-to-date information about the patient’s medication.

These systems have many benefits, but represent a significant investment, costing millions of dollars. Given their cost and complexity, provinces and territories are looking for ways to ensure the systems will meet their needs, deliver value and can effectively interoperate with other systems supporting their electronic health records.

The Preferred Solutions Agreements show that participating vendors have an understanding of the requirements for the pan-Canadian electronic health record and a commitment to interoperability. These vendors will work with the eHealth Collaboratory, a leading-edge facility, to test the conformance of their solutions to pan-Canadian standards.

Infoway intends to sign Preferred Solutions Agreements with other technology providers in line with its mission to accelerate the development of electronic health records. In August, Infoway signed similar agreements with several diagnostic imaging solutions providers and with a client registry provider.

While Infoway believes that these agreements offer significant value, the selection of specific vendors rests with the specific province or territory.

About Canada Health Infoway (Infoway)
Infoway is an independent not-for-profit organization that invests with public sector partners across Canada to implement and reuse compatible health information systems which support a safer, more efficient healthcare system. Fully respecting patient confidentiality, these private and secure systems provide healthcare professionals with rapid access to complete and accurate patient information, enabling better decisions about diagnosis and treatment. The result is a sustainable, healthcare system offering improved quality, accessibility and productivity.