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The use of common medical terminology will streamline health records in the UAE. Picture for illustrative purposes only. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MoHAP) on Monday announced the adoption of technical solutions to unify the process of collecting data and organising patients’ health care records in the UAE by using common terminologies within the ‘Riayati’ platform.

The move contributes to integrating encoded clinical information into electronic health records, the ministry said. Such solutions would help enhance the ministry’s efforts to link healthcare facilities and strengthen their communication each other, as well as facilitate the exchange of healthcare information, within the framework of a common model using internationally approved medical terms.

Common health terminology

MoHAP said SNOMED CT is the most comprehensive and precise, multilingual health terminology in the world. It records, indexes and stores patient information and clinical data in a categorised format that can be retrieved or shared when needed for clinical purposes. SNOMED CT is accepted as a common global language for health terms in over 60 countries.

Unification of documentation forms

Dr Abdul Aziz Al Zarouni

Dr Abdul Aziz Al Zarouni, Acting Assistant Undersecretary for the Support Services Sector, MoHAP, indicated the move also contributes to improving the effectiveness of the Riayati platform – the unified national health file and population health management, especially for health care providers.

He added that the technology solutions will also facilitate the circulation of clinical terminology and the use of a common language, given that both electronic medical records (EMRs) and health information exchanges (HIE) adopt a common language.

He added: “The “Riayati” platform is considered one of the priority projects that contribute to strengthening and empowering the healthcare sector in the UAE. It is a digital platform featuring updated data of patient records and providing innovative solutions in the automation and management of health information.”

Improving coordination

Ali Al Ajmi, Director of Digital Health, MoHAP, said: “The use of SNOMED CT would improve functionality and coordination between health facilities. It will also contribute to enhancing the exchange of organisational data, such as the eClaims Office of the Riayati platform, and the Dubai Health Authority’s ‘Nabidh’ platform, and ‘Malaffi’ platform which links healthcare providers in the public and private sectors in Abu Dhabi.

Al Ajmi added: “The electronically stored detailed data in this system would help increase access of hospitals, clinics and pharmacies across the UAE to electronic health records (EHRs) and electronic medical records (EMRs).”