After more than a decade of hard work and collaboration, digital health is making treatment safer, more efficient, and, ultimately, better for Canadians.
Consider the following:
Use of electronic medical records (EMR) in community-based practices in Canada has yielded efficiency and patient care benefits valued at $1.3-billion since 2006.
Drug information systems reduce prescription errors and result in fewer adverse drug events with annual estimated benefits of $475-million.
Tele-health saved patients over 47 million kilometres in travel and $70-million in personal travel costs in 2010 alone.
Through investment with our jurisdictional partners, Canada Health Infoway has already established the foundational requirements for securely capturing, storing, sharing, accessing and managing health information. And while every province and territory is at a different stage of development, they are all working on these foundational elements according to their local priorities and needs.
Canadian consumers are comfortable with digital tools and are global leaders in the adoption and use of information technologies such as social media, online shopping and digital banking. Coupled with a growing desire to manage our wellness and to take on more active roles in the management of our chronic diseases, we find ourselves at a pivotal moment in our digital health journey.