Personal Health Record
Developed in collaboration with the Perinatal Institute UK and international and national development partners as well as the Integrated Maternal, Newborn & Child Health [IMNCH] core technical committee of the Federal Ministry of Health; the Personal Health Record is targeted to significantly reduce maternal, newborn and child morbidity and mortality while providing a simple and effective tool to ensure good quality, sustainable healthcare delivery.
Presenting two simultaneous methods of information capture and storage at a low per capita outlay, the Personal Health Record is both a hard-copy (paper) record, with key data pages recordable as multi-leaf carbon format, as well as easy electronic capture via the key information pages pre-designed for computer readability.
In addition, the Personal Health Record has the following features:
- A durable comprehensive document that is all encompassing, covering all necessary information from the various agencies and satisfying country specific guidelines in terms of content
- A permanent record for each child-citizen not requiring renewal, detailing the child’s health history from birth to adulthood
- A portable file-format information tool guaranteeing and recording access to public healthcare, with the ability to easily render additional information without discarding original format
- A user friendly parent-custody health record bestowing a sense of identity, entitlement and pride in citizenship akin to the holding of a national passport to health
- An all in one multi-copy health record easily completed and stored by health care providers and parents simultaneously
- The successful integration of mother and child care by amalgamating Maternal Health Indices and Child Health Indices in one document providing a single base for the monitoring of mother and child at the same time.
- An electronic data capture resource which provides for both home and facility based record keeping thereby providing a linkage between the home and healthcare provider at every level.
- An effective monitoring tool for all children born in Nigeria with in-built adaptability to changes in policy.
- An added value catalyst on existing government policy and programs in immunisation, disease prevention and control.
- A positive impact on formal birth registration by bestowing an added value bonus on parents
- A vital resource for planning and monitoring of healthcare delivery
- A consistent national framework for data collection and storage
With the global wave of increased efforts at development in a bid to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015, comes the realisation that no national government can bring about the necessary change without the concerted support of civil society.
Against this backdrop, it is essential to advance the revolution in developing countries’ health sectors using creative and contemporary mediums.
One of the unique features of the book that stands out is the “immunisation page” which covers information for a mother or carer on the appropriate times for a child to be immunised and details of what disease the child must be immunised against.
“Immunisation is a proven tool for controlling and eliminating life-threatening infectious diseases and is estimated to avert over 2 million deaths each year. It is one of the most cost-effective health investments, with proven strategies that make it accessible to even the most hard-to-reach and vulnerable populations. It has clearly defined target groups; it can be delivered effectively through outreach activities; and vaccination does not require any major lifestyle change”.
This benefits of this key page are clear: the mother is alerted when the child is due for immunisation, the medical personnel overseeing the progress of the child are warned when vaccines are not being administered, the child has an authentic record of the diseases he or she is immunised against, and stakeholder agencies, of which The Federal Ministry of Health is prime, have genuine statistics for monitoring and evaluation.
The intention is that every woman is issued a Personal Health Record as soon as she registers her pregnancy at the healthcare facility; purchased for her by her state government, as a sign of commitment to saving the lives of mothers and children.
To this end Nigeria’s Federal Government has already adopted the Personal Health Record as part of the Midwives Service Scheme (MSS) which aims to place newly qualified midwives in rural communities for a year as mandatory community service preparation to becoming a fully licensed midwife in Nigeria. However, for quicker and more effective coverage, WBF encourages states and LGAs to make plans to supply the pregnant women and children under five with the Personal Health Record.
The Personal Health Record will provide verifiable data on pregnancy outcomes in communities, and as continuity of data flow becomes less cumbersome, service uptake will be improved and quality of care guaranteed.
In addition the State and LGAs will have access to data for planning services and programmes as well being able to determine the costs and benefits of funds applied in the health sector.