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Medical Informatics--the State of the Art In the Hospital Authority.
Since its inception in 1990, the Hospital Authority (HA) has strongly supported the development and implementation of information systems both to improve the delivery of care and to make better information available to managers. This paper summarizes the progress to date and discusses current and future developments. Following the first two phases of the HA information technology strategy the basic infrastructural elements were laid in place. These included the foundation administrative and financial systems and databases; establishment of a wide area network linking all hospitals and clinics together; laboratory, radiology and pharmacy systems with access to results in the ward. A major push into clinical systems began in 1994 with the clinical management system (CMS), which established a clinical workstation for use in both ward and ambulatory settings. The CMS is now running at all major hospitals, and provides single logon access to almost all the electronically collected clinical data in the HA. The next phase of development is focussed on further support for clinical activities in the CMS. Key elements include the longitudinal electronic patient record (ePR), clinical order entry, generic support for clinical reports, broadening the scope to include allied health and the rehabilitative phase, clinical decision support, an improved clinical documentation framework, sharing of clinical information with other health care providers and a comprehensive data repository for analysis and reporting purposes.