The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW) revealed on May 11 that it will launch a system to centrally manage information on patients infected with the coronavirus. The system will be launched before the end of May 2020. Using smartphones or computers, health care professionals and patients themselves will be able to enter such information as PCR test results, symptoms, and records of patient movements. Medical facilities will be able to access this information from the cloud.
The new system will lead to a reduction of the workload for public health centers and contribute to an accurate understanding of patients’ symptoms and hospital admittance. The system will enable accurate calculations of positive rates for PCR tests. Trial operations will start at 21 local governments by May 16.
The information of people who take PCR tests and people who were in close contact with infected people will be centrally managed. Health care professionals or patients will upload information such as test results, hospitalization, symptoms, and movements. A smartphone, computer, or tablet may be used to enter information. Central and local governments and public health centers will be able to possess information on individual patients as well as the number of new infections, number of patients by symptom, and number of people discharged from hospitals.
Currently, medical facilities fax infection information to public health centers, which input the information into a computer. The delay in obtaining infection information was a target of criticism.