02 Jul 2022

Most Irish people want online access to health records, says survey

Most Irish people want online access to health records, says survey

Most Irish people want online access to health records, says survey

Eighty six percent of Irish people want access to their healthcare records through an online patient portal. 

That's according to a new national survey by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA), which surveyed 1,300 people about their digital healthcare preferences and rights. 

The survey also found that 97% believe it's important for healthcare professionals to access their information when treating them, 99% believe it's important that professionals can access their care record when they're unconscious, and 94% believe health information should be used to improve research and quality of care for patients. 

However, security issues were flagged as a concern, particularly in the wake of the HSE cyberattack at the start of the year. 

Director of Health Information and Standards at HIQA, Rachel Flynn, said, "People see the value of sharing health information electronically and of healthcare professionals having quicker access to a patients records. However, in the aftermath of the cyberattack on HSE systems, it is more important than ever that the public is assured about the security of patient information. 

According to the survey, people want to be informed about what's shared between their GP and hospital, who will use their health data and why, and who has accessed their record. 

HIQA has recommended that any health information policy put in place in future must consider patient consent and information security, particularly sensitive information such as details of sexual health. 

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