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EUROsociAL+ has promoted new legislation to streamline healthcare and strengthen patient rights
Effective medical record management is vital. Not only to improving the treatment received by patients but also to safeguarding their rights and to ensuring the effective, efficient and transparent operation of the health system. The task is an enormous challenge due to issues including the lack of storage space and human and economic resources. All this, while also ensuring that patients’ personal data are protected, their right to information is guaranteed and the transition from paper to electronic file management is achieved.
Aware of the pressing need to tackle this issue in El Salvador, the Institute for Access to Public Information (IAIP), the Ministry of Health (Minsal) and the Salvadoran Institute for Social Security (ISSS) have joined forces to lay the foundations for a new era in medical record management in this Central American country’s public healthcare sector.
The EUROsociAL+ Programme, which is financed by the European Union and managed by FIIAPP, has promoted this reform process through sharing experiences and learning with the Castilla-La Mancha Health Service (Sescam), the San Carlos Clinical Hospital in the Community of Madrid, the General Subdirectorate for State Archives at the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, and the Spanish Data Protection Agency.
Through joint inter-institutional work, great progress has been made with the Salvadoran health system. Based on a thorough diagnosis and intensive inter-institutional technical work, in December 2018, the “Guidelines to Standardise the Management and Protection of the Personal Data in the Clinical Records of the El Salvador Integrated Health System” were approved by the IAIP. In September 2019, the Official State Gazette published the Technical Standard for the Conformation, Custody and Consultation of Clinical Records, which was approved by Minsal. The regulations are mandatory in both the public and private healthcare sectors.
In 2020, EUROsociAL+ will continue to collaborate by providing technical support to the Ministry of Health in implementing the regulations in a series of pilot hospitals, in cooperation with several Salvadoran institutions.