"E-Health is not included in the current version of the Digital Economy of Russia program, however, it is regarded as a topic that we need to start working on in the near future," said the First Deputy Head of the Analytical Center Vladislav Onischenko as he opened a round table "E-Health in Russia: Key Development Areas and Prospects".
A number of e-health projects have already been developed and are being implemented and Analytical Center experts plan to study their practical application to form the most relevant program for the development of e-health in Russia, Vladislav Onischenko added.
The state policy in e-health is primarily aimed at the adoption of the necessary regulatory acts and legal regulation of the industry in general, noted Elena Boiko, the Head of the Department for Information Technologies and Communications of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation. Federal Law No 242-FZ (the so called Telemedicine Act) signed this July amended a large number of regulatory acts regulating the use of information technologies in healthcare. The amendments have affected the supply of medications, digital medical documents and the use of telemedicine to offer medical consultations to patients and track a patient's progress after diagnosis.
Ms. Boiko noted that the main objective of this area is to create a single e-health platform, namely: Uniform State Health Information System. However, there are a number of regulatory issues that are holding back the launch of the new platform: article 91 of Federal Law 323-FZ, Information Systems in Healthcare, fails to take into account all the competencies of the system. In addition, the expert believes it's important to offer systemic training to staff and ensure all departments have access to relevant infrastructure.
The participants agree that the Uniform State Health Information System must be based on the development already available, taking into account the existing mentality of the country. At the same time, a new information system in Russia is only a companion element. "Digital document processing does not free medical staff from dealing with paper-making," noted the President of the Association for the Development of Medical Information System Mikhail Elyanov.