Institute of Health Systems

     

Training
Burden Of Disease
Health System Performance Assessment
Health Sector Reform 
Health Informatics
Health Information Infrastructure
Software
i.   HIMAN Central
ii.  HIMAN 2000
iii. BDAP
iv. PRISM
  v.  Sta Tool
vi. MathMill
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Our Goals                To Improve the Efficacy,
Quality & Equity
of Health Systems.
 

Our Mission       Groom Skills,
Gather Evidence,
Generate Knowledge.

 

Health Informatics


 

Application of information technology to the health sector has tremendous potentiality for efficacy of health care delivery institutions and provision of cost-effective health care. Health care delivery institutions will need and use information technology to meet their client demands and stay competitive, since, the future for them lies in cost-effective health care. General purpose information technology solutions are usually inadequate for specialised needs of the health sector. That is why a host of solutions, standards and services are emerging to meet needs of the health sector. Application of information technology to the domain of health care delivery is referred to as Health Informatics. The Institute has been making concerted efforts to build the health informatics infrastructure (HII) in India. Major HII activities of the Institute are (a) human resource development for health informatics, (b) health informatic standards, and (c) health care identification systems.

To build skilled manpower for health informatics, IHS runs three different kinds of training programs such as system administration, health care software development and personal computing skills for health care professionals. The certificate course on Health Intranet System Administration (CHISA) consists of a phase of full time study for 3-4 months followed by on the job internship for 11-12 months. Every year a batch of upto 30 students are taken. Two distinct streams of students may enter the course first is Initial career i.e., graduates with basic computer education seeking to build a career in health care service and health informatics sector, and the second is Mid-career i.e., Health care institution personnel seeking to diversify their skills and move on to the health informatics area. The course coverage includes; personal computer hardware, networking essentials, network operating system, introduction to health care institutions, problem solving skills, and personality development. These students are prepared to provide day to day management of computer network in a health care institution or health care software development facility. So far three batches of students have been trained. So far two batches have passed out and the third batch is in the internship phase. These students have so far enjoyed a very high placement rate of more than 75%, mostly in the open market.

The certificate course in health care software development (HCSD) is designed to develop domain knowledge in health care field among computer software engineers. Participants in the course learn about health informatic standards like the Health Level Seven (HL7), general functioning of health care institutions from the information system perspective and various types of health informatic solutions. So far two batches of students have passed. The Institute also provides health care software development internships to real life project experience in health care related software development projects. Here again placement record of the Institute’s students and interns has been more than 90%. In addition IHS offers short courses on health informatic standards to meet the needs of health care software industry in the country. Its courses on HL7 standards has been attended by software engineers from many private health care software solution providers. The Institute is an Institutional member of the HL7 organisation, which is an international professional organisation for development and use of health informatic standards.

A major determinant of the rate of adoption of information technology in the health care sector is the personal computing skill of health care professionals. If doctors, nurses and other health care professionals are comfortable with personal computing, the rate of information technology adoption in health care institutions is likely to be faster. Towards this goal, the Institute incorporates a personal computing component in all its training programmes and takes up fully dedicated training courses in use of personal computers by health care professionals. Inputs on EpiInfo (WHO software on epidemiological information system) as a part of the training on Managing Primary Health Care in Remote areas is an example of the former. The program on smart use of computers by health executives is an example of the later.

IHS has recently adopted a regulation for setting up a health care identifier (HCId) system, which will be an useful infrastructure for electronic transfer of information between health care and related institutions.

The Institute also develops soft wares to meet needs of health system research. In addition software for health care institutions are developed as a part of the Institutes educational program of developing human resources in health informatics. Following is a brief overview of some of the software products being developed at the Institute.

1. BDAP (Burden of Disease Analysis Package): It is developed to allow epidemiologists and demographers to estimate disease burden for a given population. The application was commissioned by the World Health Organization.

2. PRISM (Processing Research Information System for Mortality data): It allows for entry of cause of death reports and provides services for review of individual reports by trained personnel, tabulation of data and generation of statistical reports.

3. HiMan-2000 (Health Information Manager - 2000): it is an application to log hospital statistics, admission and discharge data and send them across a wide area network, using HL 7 compliant messaging format.

4. HiMan Central (Health Information Manager - Central): It is the central server application that receives periodical reports from individual hospitals and allows for generation of management information system at the head office.

5. StaTools: It is a suite of statistical tools to meet common tasks needed by faculty and researchers at the Institute. Some tools included are (a) a tool to generate a random list, (b) a program to draw a sample based on probability proportionate to size (PPS), etc.

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