Health policies and data


Strengthening Health Information Infrastructure for Health Care Quality Governance

Good Practices, New Opportunities and Data Privacy Protection Challenges

Health data constitutes a significant resource in most OECD countries that could be used to improve population health, the quality of health care and the performance of health systems. Rising levels of chronic diseases; concerns about the quality and safety of patient care; the need to assure value for investments in health care; and the need to allocate health resources wisely; are all too important to be left without good evidence for decision making. This book, based on studies of 19 countries on the development and use of personal health data and of 25 countries on development and use of electronic health record systems, includes results showing good practices, new opportunities and data privacy protection challenges. It finds that well-intended policies to allay concerns about breaches of confidentiality and potential misuse of personal health data may be limiting data use, but that the next five years appear promising, in terms of both the number of countries that plan to implement national electronic health record systems and the number that consider it likely that data from these systems will be used for some aspects of health care quality monitoring. They also appear promising for the further use of existing personal health databases and for the linkage of multiple data sources to generate new evidence.

Published on May 15, 2013

In series:OECD Health Policy Studiesview more titles


Acronyms and abbreviations
Executive summary
Strengthening health information infrastructure matters
Taking stock of the evidence – from data use to health system improvement
National health information infrastructure
National electronic health record systems
Protection of privacy in the collection and use of personal health data
Governance of data collection, data linkages and access to data
Governance of national electronic health record systems data collection
Progress and challenges in use of personal health data
Strengthening health information infrastructure: Next steps
Annexes5 chapters available
Questionnaire on secondary use of health data
Telephone interviews on secondary use of health data
Questionnaire on electronic health record systems and the secondary use of health data
Supplementary tables
Additional information on participating countries current use of electronic medical and electronic patient records by health care providers
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