Quebec rolls out electronic database of patients’ medical records

mammogram computer doctor
A radiologist checks a mammogram. Damian Dovarganes/The Canadian Press

MONTREAL –  Quebec’s health system is about to be modernized.

Health Minister Réjean Hébert announced Monday that an electronic database of patients’ medical records is being rolled out in the National Capital, Estrie, Lanaudière and Montreal regions.

The Quebec Health Record (QHR) is a tool that doctors, pharmacists and other professionals will be able to use to access basic health information on prescriptions, lab and imaging results, allergies and hospital visits.

“We are working very hard to give professionals and institutions access to the system by 2015, and then the next step would be to provide access to patients,” Hébert said.

The details were announced at the official launch of the QHR information campaign, which will focus on raising awareness and advising Quebecers of their rights, including the right of refusal.

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The electronic database is expected to help frontline services, ensure better monitoring of patients, and allow basic medical information to be quickly accessed by doctors, nurses and pharmacists.

Medical information that may be collected will include:

• prescription information dating from 2010

• laboratory test results conducted in Quebec since 2009

• medical imaging test results (X-rays, scans, MRIs, etc.) conducted in Quebec

• vaccines received in Quebec

• doctor’s notes prepared after a hospital stay in Quebec

• notes on allergies and intolerances

The database would not be a complete medical file, nor would it hold information related to personal and family histories, social worker reports, previous surgeries, interventions or treatments, progress reports by doctors, nurses or other health professionals, electrocardiograms, information about minor surgeries or on treatment received in outpatient clinics.

For more information about the Quebec Health Record, and to learn more about your rights, click here.

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