Health Information Strategy

ACP continued to invest hundreds of leadership hours contributing to provincial e-health committees, supporting the college’s strategic goal to have patient care records that will include continuous documentation of pharmacist assessments, treatment plans, records of care, and monitoring results. 

Integrated health system technology is also one of the six themes identified in A Vision for the Future of a Healthy Alberta. The vision supports pharmacists in conducting assessments by accessing health information from all available appropriate sources, including other health providers, through real-time integration of systems across all levels of care. As new person-specific health information becomes available, technology enables timely interventions to benefit individuals. Standardized clinical support tools that are integrated into systems will support pharmacists to make evidence-informed decisions at the point of care.

With the above in mind, ACP contributed to the development of a draft provincial Health Information Strategy. Consistent with the vision and goal mentioned is the fact that most healthcare is accessed in our communities. The college has advocated that resources be reallocated to better integrate the information created with every person interaction across the healthcare continuum. Priority should be given to those professions involved in drug therapy, as it is amongst the most common interventions individuals receive. That said, appropriate drug therapy is dependent on health professionals working together with current and accurate information.

ACP also contributed to and supported the Health Information Executive Committee’s (HIEC) white paper titled “Health Information Exchange – Engaging Providers in Healthcare Innovation.” The objective of the publication was to “demonstrate that the potential benefits of an integrated health record are substantial, and that the concerns of providers can be managed. Health care and medical science should embrace well-proven technologies that benefit their patients.” The white paper contains 20 recommendations, including the need for professional regulatory and education bodies to discuss education and competency building in information exchange and management.

Canada Health Infoway (CHI), through the endorsement of Alberta Health, pushed to deliver an e-prescribe limited production roll-out (LPR) in Alberta. While ACP supports the concept of a single e-prescribing solution in Alberta, we are yet to support the CHI proposal until it is evaluated and we better understand its impact on pharmacy practice. However, ACP is working with CHI and Alberta Health in the development of e-prescribe and will monitor its impact on pharmacy practice and patient care.