ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Quality Issues in the Health Management Information System

A Case Study of Bihar

The status of the Health Management Information System in Bihar is presented and the reasons affecting the quality of data at different levels, from the health sub-centre to the state level, are examined. The quality of HMIS data is poor because of inadequate primary records, data duplication, and other process errors.

Concerned stakeholders have realised the need to collect and use health-related data in improving the public healthcare delivery system. Therefore, the issue of health planning was undertaken and considered under different five year plans, but it was lacking focus. In 2000, the Constitution gave the responsibility to plan and monitor development activities, including health, to local self-government institutions. With the launch of the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) in 2005, the emphasis shifted to local planning for health- and evidence-based approaches to make effective use of available resources. Consequently, these policy decisions led to a growing demand for basic data on health for micro-level planning and programme implementation.

With the growing importance of health in the global agenda, the Health Management Information System (HMIS) has emerged as one of the key activities that require accelerated efforts to meet international as well as country-specific health needs. Subsequently, the Health Metrics Network (HMN)1 was launched during the 58th session of the World Health Assembly (WHA) as a global partnership that facilitates better health information at the country, regional, and global levels. In India as well, the manual system of collecting health data was reorganised and computerised to make way for a new HMIS which takes care of all the health-related data needs. In addition to the health system and health programmes, the use of the HMIS has also increased in hospitals. It has been envisaged to not only help administrators have better monitoring and control of the functioning of hospitals, but also assist medical staff to improve health services with readily referenced patient data. The HMIS has also enabled provisioning of better care to patients by automating all the major functional areas and other activities of hospitals (Kandhar and Singh 2008).

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Updated On : 24th Jun, 2020
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