The Emergency Data Set for the Electronic Health Card from a Family Medicine Perspective
DOI: 10.3238/zfa.2016.0203-0207german translation / full article
Background: The German Electronic Health Card is supposed to hold emergency data to improve access to pre-existing patient information in case of an emergency. To achieve this goal the German Medical Association developed an emergency data set, which provides the possibility to store information on prior diagnoses, medications, allergies, medical implants and other emergency-relevant information. In the present study the emergency data set was tested as to the usability and the potential benefits from the perspective of family practitioners and other healthcare providers.
Methods: A two-phase exploratory study was conducted. In phase I of the study 13 primary care physicians completed a total of 64 emergency data sets and then rated the data model and the preparation process based on a semi-standardized questionnaire. In phase II these data sets then were evaluated by clinicians, emergency physicians, and paramedics. The whole exploratory validation process was performed exclusively as paper-pencil-method.
Results: The preparation process was estimated by a majority of primary care physicians as unproblematic (69 %), but without IT support as too time consuming (62 %). Most of the family practitioners as well as the majority of clinicians, emergency physicians and paramedics rated the potential benefits of the emergency data for the tested risk groups as very high or high. However, the study also shows that in many cases particular diagnoses, medications or allergies, which were considered by the emergency physicians as relevant, were not transferred from the patient’s file into the emergency data set by the family practitioners.
Conclusions: The study results indicate a high acceptance of the structure and high potential benefits of the emergency data set. Study participants hope that the preparation process is facilitated by an efficient support of doctor information systems and through information materials and training.