The electronic health record (DMP): sharing information to improve the quality of care

DMP | 19 Jul 2010
The DMP is a set of services enabling the patient and the healthcare professionals authorized by that patient to share health information in electronic form, with a view to improving preventative treatment and the continuity, coordination and quality of care.

The DMP is both personal and shared.

Personal, because it contains the patient's personal health data; it is also the patient who decides which healthcare professionals are authorized to consult it. The DMP is not compulsory and is a matter of patient choice. The DMP is a right enshrined in law and anyone covered by the French health insurance system who wants is legally entitled to the benefits it provides.

Shared, because it is designed to help healthcare professionals improve the coordination of care. It is not a substitute for their patient files, but is closely connected to them.

The DMP is therefore a set of services for patients and healthcare professionals, all of which are based on the principle of sharing our health data. This data is useful and relevant for the coordination of care, and is available throughout France, at any time.

Examples of this data include:
  • Medical history and allergies;
  • Medication prescribed;
  • Medication dispensed by a pharmacist to the patient (this information is taken from the pharmaceutical record);
  • Hospitalization and general practitioner records, results of additional tests (e.g. radiology, biology), etc;
  • Data from the patient's health insurance reimbursement history;
  • Any document deemed to be useful for the coordination of care by the healthcare professional producing it.

The methods for accessing the information contained within the DMP are fully secure:
  • For patients, this is via an Internet browser and standard Internet access;
  • For healthcare professionals, via their usual software package in the form of new integrated services or via a standard Internet browser.

In its first development cycle (2010-2013), the intention is for the DMP to offer two types of services, based on a system of national document hosting and integrated confidential services:
  • Services for document sharing between healthcare professionals
  • Services available to patients
The DMP also acts as a foundation for the development of new medical practices such as telemedicine. It will allow publishers of software for healthcare professionals to develop added value medical services, such as services to assist decision making.

It must also serve as a support mechanism for the development of new services for patients, chiefly via Internet applications.