On October 1, 2020, HRM began delivering COVID-19 notifications to physicians and nurse practitioners to check the Ontario Laboratories Information System (OLIS) for test results from pharmacies participating in the testing of Ontarians who have no COVID-19 symptoms. The notifications prompt them to query OLIS from their electronic medical records (EMRs), or by accessing the ConnectingOntario ClinicalViewer or the ClinicalConnect viewer.
During COVID-19, it has become vitally important that physicians are informed of lab test results for their patients. In April 2020, HRM began delivering notifications as soon a COVID-19 related lab result was available for tests performed in hospitals and COVID-19 assessment centres. As part of Ontario’s response to the second COVID-19 wave, COVID-19 tests are being conducted at select pharmacies to increase the province’s testing capacity and HRM has been further enhanced to deliver notifications of these test results and keep clinicians informed.
Physicians have welcomed this latest feature of HRM. Dr. S. Nagaratnam, a family physician from Ajax said, “During the COVID-19 pandemic, HRM has been especially helpful in notifying me when my patients had been tested for COVID-19 and I am prompted to go check their results through my EMR. The delivery of care is very important in these times and the notifications give me assurance that I know what's happening with my patients. If my patient indicates on the assessment form that they would like for me to be informed, I will receive their results as soon as they’re available. HRM is great for making clinicians aware of their patients’ clinical experiences.” HRM helps integrate the health system by eliminating barriers to information flow between hospitals and other health care provider sites, and clinicians. HRM has become one of Ontario’s most successful digital health assets thanks to its ability to deliver patient information from more than 540 hospital and specialty clinic sites to the EMR systems of 11,700 clinicians across the province.