Attitude Of Health Information Management Personnel Towards The Confidentiality Of Patient Information

Project and Seminar Material Under Health Information Management

Attitude Of Health Information Management Personnel Towards The Confidentiality Of Patient Information


Abstract


This study was carried out on the attitude of health information management in the confidentiality of patient information using University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo Akwa Ibom State as a case study. The survey design was adopted and the simple random sampling techniques were employed in this study. The population size comprised of health information management personnel in University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo Akwa Ibom State. In determining the sample size, the researcher purposefully selected 39 respondents and 35 were validated. Self-constructed and validated questionnaire was used for data collection. The collected and validated questionnaires were analyzed using frequency tables. The result of the findings reveals that the health workers are aware of the importance of patent’s information confidentiality. The study also revealed that the extent to which patients health information is made confidential among health personnel is high. Furthermore, the study revealed that health personnel have a positive attitude towards the confidentiality of patient information. Therefore, there is need to provide a continuing medical ethics training package for health workers before joining the hospital and in between the working time so as to improve health professionals’ knowledge and attitude towards patient confidentiality. And health Information Officers should be made to be answerable to their employer alone by restricting facility employee cum supporting agencies interactions. To mention but a few.


Table of Content


Chapter One:

Introduction

  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Significance of the Study
  • 1.6 Scope of the Study
  • 1.7 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.8 Definition of Terms
  • 1.9 Organisations of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References
  • APPENDIX
  • QUESTIONNAIRE 

Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

The growing use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) has now invaded practically every facet of society, including the healthcare industry. In recent years, the widespread use of information and communication technology (ICT) has permeated practically every aspect of human and organizational life, including the healthcare industry (Powell, Darvell, & Gray 2015). According to Park (2015), the Health Information System was created in order to fully leverage technology, particularly the Internet, in the provision of better healthcare. Health information systems are typically defined as the interplay of people, processes, and technology to support operations and management in delivering critical information to improve the quality of healthcare services. The nature of the healthcare sector, like that of any other industry, has transformed over time from a relatively stable to a dynamic one. And health information systems have evolved as a result of several technology (Haux, 2016).
Health information management (HIM) is information management applied to health and health care. It is the practice of acquiring, analyzing and protecting digital and traditional medical information that is vital to providing quality patient care. With the widespread computerization of health records, traditional (paper-based) records are being replaced with electronic health records (EHRs). The tools of health informatics and health information technology are continually improving to bring greater efficiency to information management in the health care sector. Both hospital information systems and Human Resource for Health Information System (HRHIS) are common implementations of HIM.

Health information management professionals plan information systems, develop health policy, and identify current and future information needs. In addition, they may apply the science of informatics to the collection, storage, analysis, use, and transmission of information to meet legal, professional, ethical and administrative records-keeping requirements of health care delivery (World Health Organization, 2010).Besides offering medical services, the hospital tends to provide clinical education and training to students, nurses, and other healthcare professionals as well as preservation of patient information.

Over the years, many research have focused on confidentiality of patients information. Confidentiality” according to Merriam Webster Dictionary, (2018) means showing that you are saying something that is secret or private or trusted with secret or private information. Confidentiality is an essential part of the bond of trust that exists between doctor and patient. Failure to maintain confidentiality may mean a patient is reluctant to reveal private or sensitive information that you may need to know in order to treat them appropriately. The need for preservation and security of patients’ records cannot be overemphasized. Patient records are of great importance to every health institution, and records are kept and managed by the health administrators in the health records unit. A patient’s right to privacy involves the confidentiality of information related to the patient and bodily privacy of the patient From a historical perspective, an overview of legal instruments related to patient rights show that privacy and confidentiality of private life were involved in all relevant instruments (i.e. American Hospital Association’s Patient’s Bill of Rights 1972, World Medical Association’s Declaration of Lisbon on the Rights of the Patient 1981, Amsterdam Declaration on the Promotion of Patients’ Rights in Europe 1994, Bali Declaration 1995, European Charter of Patients’ Rights 2002).

Confidentiality and privacy are vital for establishing and maintaining an effective and respectful clinical relationship. The right to privacy constitutes a social merit as it encourages the explicit discussion of health-related problems between clinicians and patients. Privacy requires physicians to keep confidential information that patients provide or they obtain in their professional interaction with patients (Braunack-Mayer et al., 2003). Privacy is important as it provides a secure environment for patients where they receive medical care and provide complete and accurate information, and which reinforces confidence in health care and emphasizes the importance of respect for patient autonomy (Beauchamp, 2009).Therefore, hospital personnel protection of confidentiality involves the need to ensure that patient information obtained during treatment will be shared only with those who are providing health care, unless consent is given for others to receive the patient’s information or an exception to the protection of confidentiality applies.


1.2 Statement of the Problem

The attitude of health administrator (health information management) has lead to litigation by patients’ in the hospital. It has led to distrust between patients and health professionals in the hospital. It has enhances stigmatization of patients privacy due to exposure of staff records on medically challenged issues. As observed by Ojo & Popoola, (2015), in utilizing health care services, it is important that patients share personal information with health workers. Health care providers have a duty as professionals to respect the patient’s trust and keep the information private.

However, patients’ awareness of their rights to privacy and confidentiality is often low. Previous qualitative research has shown that a significant number of patients are not ready to give some of their personal information needed for their treatment. They can even give inaccurate or incomplete information in their medical histories because they believe that the healthcare providers might divulge such information to unauthorized third parties. Even when the health care providers do not disclose such information, it is likely that in teaching hospitals like University College Hospitals (UCH) where consultations are conducted with several medical personnel in the same room and also the presence of medical students can bring about difficulty in keeping privacy.

In view of these observations, this study was conducted to explore the attitude of health information management personnel towards the confidentiality of patient information


1.3 Objective of the Study

The broad objective of this study is to examine attitude of health information management personnel towards the confidentiality of patient information.

Other specific objectives includes:

  1. Ascertain whether there is effective health information management in the hospital.
  2. Determine whether health workers are aware of the importance of patent’s information confidentiality.
  3. Determine the extent to which patients health information is made confidential among health personnel.
  4. Find out if health personnel have a positive attitude towards the confidentiality of patient information.

1.4 Research Question

The research is guided by the following research question:

  1. Is there effective health information management in the hospital?
  2. Are health workers are aware of the importance of patent’s information confidentiality?
  3. What is the extent to which patients health information is made confidential among health personnel?
  4. Does health personnel have a positive attitude towards the confidentiality of patient information?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The findings of this research work will be useful in the evaluation of the knowledge and attitude of patients towards the privacy and confidentiality of their health information. The result of this study will also be useful in enlightening the patients about the importance of sharing their information with the health care providers. Furthermore the findings of this research will help various medical institutions adopt controls and policies concerning the appropriate use, access to and dissemination of patients’ health information. Also, the results of this study will help to promote the practice of confidentiality of health information among health care professionals in Nigeria. It will further allow health organizations to devise educational mechanisms such as distributing information notices about patient confidentiality to ensure the use of ethical practices in regard to clinical information in the health care system.


1.6 Scope of the Study

The scope of the study borders on attitude of health information management personnel towards the confidentiality of patient information. The study is limited to University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo Akwaibom State.


1.7 Limitation of the Study

Like in every human endeavour, the researchers encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. The significant constraint was the scantiness of literature on primary education. Thus much time and organization was required in sourcing for the materials and literature that will be relevant to study as well in the process of data collection. Also the study is limited in sample size and geography covering only hospital personnel University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo Akwaibom State. Therefore findings of this study cannot be used for generalization in other hospitals within or outside the state this therefore creates a gap for further studies.


1.8 Definition of Terms

Attitude:

It is a complex mental state involving belief and feelings to acts in certain ways.

Records:

It is a sum total of all staff documents, which will enhance promotion and functionality of all staffs in the hospital.

Health:

It is a complete state of physically mental and social well-being not merely the absence of disease or infirmities.

Health Information Management System:

Is a system whereby health data are recorded, stored, retrieved and processed to improve decision-making.

Confidentiality:

A state keeping or being kept or private.


Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations:

5.1 Introduction

This chapter summarizes the findings on the attitude of health information management in the confidentiality of patient information using University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo Akwa Ibom State as a case study. The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.


5.2 Summary of the Study

In this study, our focus was onthe attitude of health information management in the confidentiality of patient information using University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo Akwa Ibom State as a case study. The study is was specifically focused on finding out ascertain whether there is effective health information management in the hospital, determine whether health workers are aware of the importance of patent’s information confidentiality, determine the extent to which patients health information is made confidential among health personnel, and find out if health personnel have a positive attitude towards the confidentiality of patient information.

The study adopted the survey research design and randomly enrolled participants in the study. A total of 35 responses were validated from the enrolled participants where all respondent are health information management personnel in University of Uyo Teaching Hospital in Uyo Akwa Ibom State.


5.3 Conclusions

In the light of the analysis carried out, the following conclusions were drawn.

  1. There is effective health information management in the hospital.
  2. The health workers are aware of the importance of patent’s information confidentiality.
  3. The extent to which patients health information is made confidential among health personnel is high.
  4. Health personnel have a positive attitude towards the confidentiality of patient information.

5.4 Recommendation

Based on the findings the researcher recommends that;

  1. There is need to provide a continuing medical ethics training package for health workers before joining the hospital and in between the working time so as to improve health professionals’ knowledge and attitude towards patient confidentiality.
  2. Internet facilities with its accessories should be provided in order to enhance documentation, treatment and tracing of defaulters by Health Information Officers.
  3. Health Information Officers should be made to be answerable to their employer alone by restricting facility employee cum supporting agencies interactions.
  4. Ensuring that health administrators are well enlightened on the benefits and effects of health data.

Attitude Of Health Information Management Personnel Towards The Confidentiality Of Patient Information


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