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Most security enhancements to National Electronic Health Records to be completed this year

Most security enhancements to National Electronic Health Records to be completed this year

Patients waiting to see the doctor at a clinic in Singapore. (File photo: TODAY)

SINGAPORE: Most of the security enhancements to the National Electronic Health Records (NEHR) are expected to be completed within the year, Senior Minister of State for Health Janil Puthucheary said on Friday (Mar 5).

More healthcare institutions will then be brought on board to contribute to NEHR, he said in Parliament during his ministry’s Committee of Supply debate.

This is following technical and process enhancements to improve the “security posture” of the NEHR in response to reviews conducted in 2018, he said.

Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said then that NEHR will be put through a “rigorous independent external review” before the contribution of electronic health records is made mandatory.

The review came after a cyberattack on SingHealth's IT system.

READ: SingHealth cyberattack: MOH mulling permanent Internet surfing separation for some parts of healthcare system

READ: Healthcare Services Bill: MOH can temporarily take over operations of healthcare services in financial trouble

On Friday, Dr Puthucheary said that as a repository of patient summary records, the NEHR has been a "key enabler" in facilitating provision of care during the pandemic.

“Healthcare professionals can access NEHR for their patients’ COVID-19 test results and their existing medical conditions before vaccination,” he said.

The NEHR was enhanced this year to meet the requirements for COVID-19 vaccination display, reporting and alerts, he added.

“Data security remains a key priority,” he said.

Source: CNA/ja

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