EMR enables Partners In Health relief efforts in Haiti

If you've been following Haiti relief efforts since the Jan. 12 earthquake sent that troubled country deeper into chaos, you've probably seen the name "Partners In Health." That group, a Boston-based not-for-profit with loose ties to Harvard University and Partners HealthCare System, has nine established medical clinics in Haiti, and has developed an open-source EMR called OpenMRS, now in use in nearly two dozen developing countries across the globe.

In Haiti, OpenMRS and a web-based EMR that preceded it have been tracking HIV patients at PIH clinics since early 2003. The database now contains records for more than 14,000 patients, and includes a pharmacy management tool that serves 10 Haitian hospitals and a medication warehouse. Health workers use the system to enter medication orders, as well as track and report on stock levels. The EMR also produces reports for public-health officials and non-governmental organizations that fund health efforts in the impoverished country. Thanks to satellite links, the system has remained functional throughout the current crisis.

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