Interview

Achieving Integration – Apollo Hospitals Dhaka : A.K.M. Nazrul Haider, General Manager – IT, Apollo Hospitals Dhaka, Bangladesh

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What has been your overall strategy in adoption of IT for gaining operational and business efficiency at Apollo Dhaka?
Established in 2005, Apollo Hospitals Dhaka is a recognised provider of premium private healthcare in Bangladesh, and the first-of-its-kind in the country that redefines healthcare delivery system with a paper-less environment by introducing a robust IT system and infrastructure. Since inception, our IT system has created an environment that allows our doctors to practice medicine in the best way possible and create a good relationship with their patients through information sharing. We wanted clinical information at the fingertips of our doctors to enable quick diagnosis. Like most world-class hospitals, Apollo Hospitals Dhaka is also focused on maximizing patient safety, quality and value with the adoption of IT. We focused first on the fundamental technology needs in our hospitals – EMR [electronic medical records], CPOE [computerized physician order entry] and BPOC [bar-coded point of care] interface solutions. To accomplish the goal of unique identification of our patients at the time of registration, we opted for a combination of bar code and RFID [radio frequency identification] technology so that we can create electronic records that ensure the right patients received the right medication at the right time. To manage safety and improve quality, the system ensures that all clinicians have the information they need to support optimal decisions and actions at every point of the medication cycle.

Please elaborate on some of the technological and clinical innovations at Apollo Dhaka.
We had started operations by implementing the Hospitals Information System (HIS) from Akhil System Pvt. Ltd, based in New Delhi, India, a professional software company specialising in delivering total health care IT solutions for hospitals. The system was developed over decades under supervision of practicing medical professionals and domain experts with a specialised IT team, who have successfully computerised a large number of hospitals with a wide range of functionalities. During implementation period, the system went through a variety of changes to accommodate the unique nature of our health care delivery system, especially in the area of high volume Outpatients and management of Pharmacy, single dose concepts and use of generic drug names. The system is an integrated enterprise software solution that integrates virtually every department. It is unique in the fact that it is an integrated solution that combines both healthcare (front-office) and back-office operation in a single database, which works virtually 24 hours a day throughout the year.

The HIS system architecture was based on a single-server and single-database model containing the entire facility

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