NCZI Head: eHealth Not Terminally Ill; Has Only Childhood Illnesses

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Head of the National Centre for Health Information (NCZI) Peter Blaskovits (right) - stock photo by TASR

Bratislava, January 16 (TASR) – The recently launched electronic health care isn’t suffering from any chronic or fatal disease, stated head of the National Centre for Health Information (NCZI) Peter Blaskovits on Tuesday, describing the problems related to eHealth as minor childhood illnesses.

Blaskovits said that the technical problems that have accompanied the launch of eHealth are under control and can be resolved.

According to the NCZI head, the fact that the electronic health-care system was finally put into operation in January is a success. “We’ve managed to launch it, and it’s working. We’re aware of the fact that it has its children’s diseases, but that’s totally natural,” he said, adding that it’s a rather common thing for such a huge project. People and doctors can’t expect it to run absolutely flawlessly from the beginning, he said.

Blaskovits further stated that NCZI is working on a comprehensive change in legislation related to eHealth. The change involves, in particular, scrapping sanctions for health-care providers that don’t join the eHealth system on time. Both NCZI and the Health Ministry have already promised to adopt changes in this regard.

Health Minister Tomas Drucker (a Smer-SD nominee) doesn’t think that the state has underestimated the situation surrounding the launch of eHealth, describing it as only “slight labour pains”.

Drucker further stated that some doctors, however, might have underestimated the situation a little by leaving the process of signing up to the system to the last minute. On the other hand, Drucker admitted that some logistics problems with supplying outpatient software might have occurred as well.

Earlier in the day general practitioners pointed out that the launch of eHealth has been accompanied by a number of problems that are making it difficult for doctors to carry out their work properly. Private Doctors Association (ASL) President Marian Soth said that neither electronic recommendation papers, nor electronic prescriptions are working properly and that doctors have even less time for their patients than before, as they have to deal with various technical issues.