Abu Dhabi: Instead of filling out paperwork by hand, hospitals and doctors are now required to input information into an electronic database known as Electronic (E) Notification, announced the Health Authority Abu Dhabi (HAAD) on Wednesday.
E-Notification has been introduced for the first time across the emirate to help contain the spread of infectious diseases such as chicken pox, cholera, influenza, yellow fever, plague, rabies, measles, meningitis and many more.
Hundreds of physicians, nurses and laboratory technicians from various public and private hospitals attended a HAAD workshop on Wednesday to learn more about filling out an electronic notification form, which will help identify a confirmed or suspected disease and monitor community outbreaks.
"Accurate data driven information is vital to prevent a disease outbreak. Once the physician fills out the notification form, our public health team immediately estimates the magnitude of the problem and acts accordingly," said Dr Asma Al Mannaei, Surveillance Section, Public Health Team, HAAD.
The HAAD surveillance unit has already identified a list of 85 conditions of reportable communicable diseases across the emirate.
"A single reported infectious case from each one of you can help control a medical outbreak before it gets out of hand," Al Mannaei said.
Health professionals are required to fill out five different parts in the notification form, including the patient's personal information, employment status, clinical case and the type of disease he/she has been diagnosed with.
According to Dr Mariam Abdullah Al Mulla, Communicable Diseases Section, Public Health & Policies at HAAD, the new system will help identify disease trends, risk factors and standardise methods faster.
"The whole idea is to speed up the reporting process between hospitals and the HAAD for the sake of the patient. Filling out the notification form takes less than a minute. In the past there was a delay in reporting or not enough reporting at all, incomplete data, unclear handwriting and technical issues," Dr Jamal Al Mutawa, Section Head, Communicable Disease, Public Health & Research Department at the HAAD, told Gulf News on the sidelines of the workshop.
Filling out notification forms is obligatory for health professionals.
"Failure to fill out the notification form will result in individual punishment and we don't want that," said Al Mutawa.
HAAD will be involved in various workshops regarding E-Notification in the next six months to one year in order to increase compliance among health professionals.