Health Ministry Awards US$1.05 Million Contract for Laboratory Information System


The Ministry of Health has awarded a contract valued at US$1,050,000 to United States-based company, STARLIMS Corporation, to implement and install a laboratory information system (LIS) at the National Public Health Laboratory (NPHL).
This system is being funded by the World Bank and the Government of Jamaica through the National HIV/STI Control and Prevention Programme.
Minister of Health, Horace Dalley, in his remarks at the signing ceremony held on April 12 at the Ministry downtown Kingston, said it was virtually impossible for a country to provide good health care for its citizens without a state-of-the-art information system.
“You cannot in this day and age deliver good healthcare to your people unless you have a backbone in information technology to support that. You have your nurses, your doctors and other health professionals; you have our facilities that must be state-of-the-art but all of that will still keep you in the past unless you are able to put in a good information technology system,” he stressed.
According to the Minister, the LIS, the first of its kind in Jamaica, will link the NPHL, the Blood Bank, the Victoria Jubilee Hospital Cross Match Lab, the Kingston Public Hospital Emergency Lab, and the Comprehensive Health Centre.
The NPHL and the Blood Bank will be the main installation sites for the LIS and the system should be in place at these facilities by year-end. It will roll out to the other laboratories by February 2008.The LIS is expected to improve the existing system, which is paper-based, by tracking specimen from source through to the testing process, thus enabling results verification and providing a history of past test results.
On the patient side, the technology should result in the speedier transmission of results to the onsite physician, thereby enabling the patient to more quickly receive treatment.

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