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Directorate General of Information Technology

Directorate General of Information Technology

Praise to Allah who created the universe, founded it on one system, and guided us to the proper planning and clear goals based on future vision according to the available possibilities, leading us to achieve the best results and facilitate the continuity of purposeful progress in order to achieve the desired goals and achieving high-quality care and sustainable health. Information Technology and Communication (ICT) has witnessed, in the last few years, rapid progression and direct effects of the digital revolution on lifestyle in various areas including health lifestyles. No doubt, health information technology’s sector is heading towards a significant growth driven by the increased demand for modern technologies especially the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4th-IR) and sequential growth of the Technology infrastructure. In this regard, the Directorate General of Information Technology (DGIT) is obliged to cope with this digital spike and seek to achieve and integrated system that ensures patients’ safety and improves the quality of services provided to the community, aiming to form a national digital system serving the health sector in the Sultanate. The past years and this year (2019) witnessed activation and implementation of several national applications that serve this digital system, given that technical development and innovation in health care in Oman are among the pillars and priorities of the Ministry of Health through the provision of integrated health information services in accordance with international standards. The DGIT holds the responsibility of providing technical support for the health sector in Oman, through building a national integrated e-health system that serves the modern life necessities, through digitizing and automating the different health systems and providing the necessary ICT infrastructure. The achievements and innovations that we witness today is a product of hard work and correct planning by the managers of this system. During the past years, the DGIT has witnessed the establishment of several national programs and systems, designed and developed in-house by IT staff of MOH as per international standards and codes. These programs and systems have become a milestone in the Sultanate in terms of the number of digital transformations in line with the demands of the technical era and the e-Government strategy. Al-Shifa system is perhaps the most obvious milestone of the digital health system in the Sultanate, which manages medical records at health establishments. The Ministry of Health has established a national system for an E-health record, called “Nahr Al-Shifa” or NEHR. This system integrates all public and private health institutions into one e-health record using civil ID number as a unique identifier. The Personal Health Record (PHR), is derived from NEHR. Moreover, MOH has established a distinguished system including several sub-systems, such as Nabdh Al-Shifa is a national central data warehouse for health information, on which dashboards are designed and national reports and different statistics are generated using business intelligence (BI) tools. E-referral is a system that allows referring patients online from one health establishment to another. E-notification helps in reporting different medical conditions and incidents. There is also, the central blood bank system (National Blood donation Registry - NBDR), the central laboratory system, and the Central Birth and Death Registry “Ajyal” system, which deals with the registration of births and deaths, in collaboration with Royal Oman Police Civil Status. As well as the pilgrims' health check-up program, that is integrated with the Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs (MARA), amongst other systems and programs. With this amount of systems, programs, and achievements, we are in a continuous state of a challenge to maintain, develop, and integrate these systems. Our role, as a team, is to try our best to maintain the essential building blocks of these systems and continue to build on together. All staff at the MOH are equally important and responsible in developing this system, and your pioneering in this matter is visible and we appeal to you to continue developing the system in order to achieve our goals of progression and prosperity. As a part of the Sultanate's strategy towards the digital transformation of the e-government, the Ministry of Health aims to reduce the digital gap and digitalize several services, and ensure integration with various governmental and private establishments, to reach paperless digital environments. To achieve that, the Ministry has established the e-health portal, which has e-services through the Internet and the internal network for different segments of the community using various technologies such as the government cloud, PKI, e-security, and e-payment to facilitate services for citizens and residents, reduce visits to health institutions, and save time and hasten productivity. The portal has different technical features to ensure smooth integration with any other internal of external. The visitor may also log-in to the portal through any digital device either computer, tab, smartphone, or any other devices. The mobile application of the portal is available for different smartphones platforms. As a part of innovation and development, the ministry implemented artificial intelligence technology to diagnose breast cancer cases. It was a successful trial project, and it will be applied during 2019 in 5 hospitals in the Sultanate; in the hope of implementing it in all the hospitals following the success of the trial in the 5 health establishments. We also intend to implement a VNA to connect radiology departments in health establishments to an interactive central database. In conclusion, we always emphasize the need to maintain regular assemblies and communication between us in order to serve our beloved Oman and to maintain the great achievements under the ruling of his Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said. We pledge to his Majesty that the soil of Oman is our pride and honor and we assure him that Omani citizens will preserve the greatness of his achievements for the sake of our beloved Oman. Abdullah bin Hamoud Al-Raqqadi Director General of Information Technology

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