Having qualified medical personnel and delivering quality primary health care services are key elements of a strong health care system. Caritas Czech Republic has been actively supporting the strengthening of Georgian health care system for years. Thanks to the financial support from Czech Development Agency and UNICEF, CCR introduces comprehensive IT solutions to the Ministry of Health of Georgia which will contribute to the monitoring of the quality of health services, timely clinical decision-making and will result in improved patient outcomes.
Presentation of Comprehensive IT Solutions
Caritas Czech Republic presented a Unified Electronic Management Information and a 0-6 Child Health and Development surveillance Information Systems to the Ministry of Health of Georgia. In this regard, Jan Blinka, CCR Head of Mission in Georgia and Jiri Skvor, CCR Head of Humanitarian Aid and Development Cooperation met with Tamar Gabunia, First Deputy Minister of Health of Georgia. High officials of the ministry as well as the PHC experts participated in the event.
A unified electronic information system is a tool that will help the government of Georgia track not only the PHC quality but will be only source for information registration and enable automatic data sharing with different Georgian government-owned information systems. The e-MIS will be a useful tool for the PHC clinics which do not have any internal electronic systems for patient data-collecting, especially in rural areas. The unified electronic management information system includes the Electronic Medical Records, E-queue and E – referral management systems and is equipped with the telemedicine function, which will enable to book appointments by various service types and even have a direct telehealth visit with patients.
As for the 0-6 Child Health and Development Surveillance Information System, it ensures the integration of child health and development-related data into a real-time electronic management information System intended as a mainstream tool for strengthening the primary healthcare in Georgia.
“With the development of comprehensive IT solutions, Caritas Czech Republic is improving the quality of Georgian primary health care system immensely. After the introduction of IT solutions in PHC facilities, the doctors and other staff will get perfect digital tools to manage inflow of patients, follow their medical record from previous visits, and to refer them to the specialists in other clinics. I am sure that this digitization of medical records will positively impact patients´ satisfaction and in a long run also their health outcomes, ” Blinka, Head of Mission, Caritas Czech Republic in Georgia.
The support provided by Caritas Czech Republic is very important for the ministry as the information systems being developed within the project enables to utilize digital data for decision-making about investments in health care systems and for introduction of results-based payment system in Georgia.
CCR's Role in Georgia's PHC
Since 2015, Caritas Czech Republic has been supporting the Georgian Government aiming to reform the health care and social sectors. Information systems developed for the Ministry of Health of Georgia are part of Caritas Czech Republic's broader contribution to the country's health care system, especially at the PHC level.
Thanks to the financial support from Czech Development Agency, CCR experts developed clinical practice guidelines and protocols and are piloting them at primary healthcare facilities (in the municipalities of the Mtskheta-Mtianeti and Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti) based on the clinical topics selected jointly with the Ministry of Health of Georgia. A primary focus is placed on the most common non-communicable diseases: diabetes, hypertension, cardio-vascular diseases, chronic lung diseases, dyslipidemia as well as preventive care related protocols such as surveillance over 0-6 child health and development, examination of well persons aged 18-65 and above 65. The most important benefit of clinical practice guidelines is their potential to improve both the quality of process of care and patient outcomes.
In addition to the trainings, the PHC experts are providing coaching and regular supportive supervision to the medical staff in the selected municipalities of Dusheti and Zugdidi with the aim to engage family physicians in quality improvement activities. Those are essential to achieving the aim of improving the health of the population, enhancing patient experiences and outcomes and improving PHC provider capacity
Furthermore, after the COVID-19 outbreak, CCR rapidly tailored its activities to cope with the pandemic, and with this in mind, conducted online trainings in the management of the COVID-19 cases, post-covid complications, and vaccination side effects for rural doctors. Moreover, CCR handed over 50 computers to local ambulatories to effectively implement their clinical practice.
Caritas Czech Republic continues to support the strengthening of the Georgian healthcare system.