Software glitch affects 615 patients in Newfoundland and Labrador

A software glitch has resulted in up to 615 patients in Newfoundland and Labrador from getting their medical results over the last year, according to a Newfoundland and Labrador Centre for Health Information (NLCHI) media release.

In the release, NLCHI said that an error in TELUS Health’s Medical Access System delayed the medical results of hundreds of patients between November 2017 and last month.

“We have been made aware of 615 patients who may not have received their medical results in a timely manner, this is a serious issue.” Minister of Health and Community Services, John Haggie, said.

“Safety and full disclosure to those impacted are my primary concerns. I have directed NLCHI to take immediate action to correct this situation. They are in the process of contacting all those impacted, and an investigation is underway.”

TELUS Electronic Medical Record is a program designed for the use of physicians and doctors and other healthcare providers. It is used to improve collaboration, enhance patient outcomes, and provide access to patient data.

No evidence of harm

“Upon learning of this issue, NLCHI’s first priority was to act on behalf of the impacted patients. To date, there has been no evidence of harm.

We immediately took action to resolve this issue, and will continue to work with our partners to ensure they have confidence in this system moving forward,” Dr. Kris Aubrey-Bassler, chair of the NLCHI board of directors, said.

A case-by-case investigation is being carried out to ensure that all patients’ cases are dealt with.

NLCHI said they have notified all healthcare providers who were using the system and have asked them to directly contact all affected patients. Notices have also been sent by NLCHI via mail or courier.

Other locations affected by the software glitch

Other jurisdictions that use this software and have been affected include Nova Scotia, British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, and Saskatchewan.

According to a Northern Pen report, Stephen Clar, president and acting CEO of NLCHI said: “We have been assured by TELUS Health the root cause has been identified and corrected.

“The amount of people affected was a small number. There were 1.5 million transactions handled by the system and only a small number of them didn’t get through,” Clark added.

Written by Islam Soliman