Malaysia aims to digitise all healthcare facilities by 2030


THE Ministry of Health (MoH) aims to digitalise all its facilities by 2030 to ensure its priority in providing the best services for patients, said Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa (picture).

“One of our missions is towards digitising healthcare soon, hopefully by 2030. We should embark on this digitisation of all facilities. Not only the system in the hospital, but also other parts of the hospital management,” she said at a press conference for South-East Asia’s (SE Asia) annual hospital management conference, Hospital Management Asia (HMA) 2023, today.

Digitisation of healthcare in Malaysia has been discussed several times since 2020 to ensure easier health access to everyone in the country.

In May, Dr Zaliha announced MoH is in the midst of developing a health information exchange platform, which will integrate the data of patients across the nation into one digital data-sharing platform.

She said the platform will make it easier for hospitals to access patients’ health records and ensure they get more holistic treatment.

Meanwhile, the Association of Private Hospitals Malaysia president Datuk Dr Kuljit Singh, remarked that in healthcare, it is important to embrace change as it drives innovation.

Hence, he said the ongoing hospital management conference is a good opportunity to work together with HMA to learn a lot about the kind of healthcare facilities that exist in Asia.

“This improves our level of understanding of each other, enables us to learn from our successes and failures, and ultimately enhances healthcare delivery in Asia. This meeting is indeed very useful,” he said.

Adding that the meeting includes 1,000 delegates, mostly from SE Asia, he finds it very encouraging and takes pride in being part of such a conference.

Dr Kuljit said that acknowledging our position at the crossroads of technological change, patient care and administrative advancements will empower the healthcare industry to create a more efficient system, benefitting providers and recipients of care.

According to US medical expert Stacey A Rizza, Mayo Clinic — a US-based non-profit organisation — has a number of initiatives that it performs internationally which allow it to touch people’s lives, and work with collaborators and partners in different parts of the world.

“One of the ways we do that as a global consulting force is by providing healthcare consulting for many of our collaborators and partners in SE Asia, as well as in other markets of the world.

“We also have the Mayo Clinic Care Network, where we carefully vet hospitals or hospital systems to enter into partnerships where we share some of our knowledge, processes or algorithms. Also, we have educational initiatives,” she explained.

Highlighting that Mayo Clinic is at the meeting to support the doctors, she also pointed out that the organisation wants to be a part of the care system, education and the thought process.

For the record, the non-profit organisation is committed to clinical practice, education and research, providing whole-person care to everyone who needs healing.

On general practitioner (GP) consultation fees, Dr Zaliha said the Skim Perubatan Madani (SPM) is for bottom 40% income group (B40) patients who want to get treatment, especially for cases in the nearby clinics.

“We have a cap on the price that we pay to our GPs, but we would be further reviewing the prices based on examinations and procedures, as well. It could go up to 170 caps for each patient’s visit,” said Dr Zaliha.

SPM is a pilot initiative by the Malaysian government through the MoH that is implemented to accommodate the health needs of the B40 group for Acute Primary Care Services in 21 districts.