The changing landscape of health information services during COVID-19

Linda Plummer, director of health information services, Information Management and Technology at Nova Scotia Health
Linda Plummer, director of health information services, Information Management and Technology at Nova Scotia Health.
The Nova Scotia Health Information Management and Technology (IM/IT) Health Information Services team plays a vital role in providing access to accurate and reliable data to support better patient care and health outcomes, as well as improve overall organizational performance.
 
Linda Plummer is the director of health information services for Nova Scotia Health’s Information Management and Technology team. 
 
In her role, she is responsible for managing the information management business practice and standards associated with admitting, switchboard, health records, transcription, coding and abstracting and third party release of information.
 
When the COVID-19 pandemic reached Nova Scotia, Plummer’s team had to adapt quickly to support Nova Scotia Health’s overall COVID-19 response.
 
This included re-prioritizing their work to provide support in COVID-19 clinical areas. 
 
“Nova Scotia Health’s current clinical information systems require health care providers to document patient information on paper and then Health Information Services scans the paper to create an electronic record,” said Plummer. “The pandemic has exemplified the need to enhance our electronic environment enabling online documentation and access to electronic patient information.” 
 
The team continues to play a critical role in supporting Nova Scotia Health’s pandemic response, including:
  • Promoting the adoption of processes for proper personal protective equipment
  • Providing management and resourcing for new COVID-19 testing sites
  • Working collaboratively with teams to develop testing strategies to support post- secondary education and travel
  • Developing contingency planning for increased influx of COVID-19 related health care needs 
  • Designing COVID-19 clinical documentation templates
  • Working collaboratively to resume the clinical care delivery models for patient care within Nova Scotia Health
During Health Information Professionals (HIP) Week (October 5 to 9) we celebrate these integral members of our health care team. Learn more - https://hipweek.ca/