However, despite its popularity abroad, Filipino physicians do not seem to be catching on.
Illegible handwriting of physicians on drug prescriptions and doctor’s orders can easily have fatal implication on patients’ health and well being. In the United States alone, about 7,000 people die annually due to misread prescriptions and doctor’s orders.
Primarily aiming to eliminate the risks that comes with handwritten medical documents, Dr. Richard T. Mata, a member of Philippine Pediatrician Society, developed the Easy Clinic Software, a free and customizable software that enable the efficient and fast system of processing medical information to produce accurate and readable digital prescriptions and admitting orders.
During his presentation at the First Regional Forum on eHealth, held in Davao City on 28 March 2014, Dr. Mata stressed that he developed the program aiming to help his fellow Filipino doctors digitize their admitting orders and prescriptions. However, he lamented that Filipino doctors are not as quick as their foreign counterparts in utilizing the technology.
Majority of his downloaders are coming from India and the USA. During the past eight months, around 14,748 doctors worldwide downloaded the software, with India leading the pack with 5,438 users, followed by United States with 1,474, and Philippines with 1,205.
Dr. Mata explained that the gap on utilization of his software between foreign and local users could have stemmed from lack of awareness among Filipino doctors due to lack of nationwide projects to promote eHealth inventions such as the Easy Clinic Software. He insisted that in order for the Philippines to lead the world in terms of digitizing medical records, stakeholders in ICT health must focus on introducing eHealth inventions to local doctors.
The Easy Clinic Software offers revolutionary benefits to replace the age-old practice of handwriting admitting orders and drug prescriptions. The software can be synchronized with the patient’s database allowing the doctor to include patient’s information on the prescription such as the name, age, sex, address and even a photo. It automatically saves the details of the prescription into the patient’s database ensuring that copies are also kept within the doctor’s file. As well, terminologies can be inputted into the software to suit the commonly prescribed drugs of the physician.
Dr. Mata insisted that to provide the optimum care, developing the country’s ICT potential is inevitable. Challenging stakeholders from both the ICT and health sectors, he said, “Make the Philippines a worldwide example.”