The new system cannot function without a comprehensive and interoperable digital information system. Clear and accurate data on users, providers, benefits, products, and outcomes are essential to a functioning system and this data must generate information that allows the Fund to measure equity, access of users to providers and benefits, and to plan strategic purchasing where there are inequities and deficiencies. Everything must be coded for the system to work, and these need to be universal codes, universally adopted (used by every role-player in both public and private sectors), and preferably international, to allow benchmarking.
Every person (health system user) in the country must have a portable electronic health record that every provider adds to each time they see the user and provide care. These unique patient records will belong to the patient (user) but allow every provider to build on an existing health record without duplicating tests, treatment, and care. The records will be carried on the Health Patient Record System (HPRS), which is already in place. Providers, managers, researchers, and policymakers must have access to the depersonalised data to manage individual patient care, and equity through strategic purchasing, and to develop improved and evolving policies.
The law (National Health Act and the NHI Bill) provides the framework and assigns powers to achieve this, but the Regulations and the data governance, operating procedures, standard dictionaries, normative standards for interoperability, standard analytics, and publication of indicators all need to be developed, documented, and managed.