In Nigeria, many hospitals use a manual system for management and maintenance of sensitive and private information. The current manual system of requires a whole lot of processing power, lot of paper work, with information and data spread across different places throughout the hospital management infrastructure which may result to incomplete information, loss of information during transit from one department to another and would cost a whole lot because there has to be a comprehensive and widespread auditing process to ensure no important information is lost from time to time. An important aspect of any hospital operation involves the procurement, management and timely retrieval of great tons of information. This information basically is patient personal information, staff information, room scheduling and various others. All this information needs to be managed in a very efficient and cost effective way so that the hospital resource is effectively managed/utilized. Hospital management system is designed to replace existing manual paper based system and is aimed at effectively managing the hospital and making it more efficient and error free. It aims at making data standard and it ensures the integrity of data thereby reducing inconsistencies and contradictions. The system is also developed to decrease work that is being done at hospitals making almost every step being done with the help of the automated system.
In this era of globalization and advancement in technology, efficient record keeping cannot be over emphasized. Imagine a scenario where records are kept manually, how are they secured? How is manipulation of data and information prevented? How does the hospital prevent unauthorized access to patient personal information? Is it still okay to stick with the manual system at this point of advanced technology usage? . Hospital management requires a whole lot of decision making which is highly difficult if there is no strong and effective management system in place as there is need for precise and accurate implementation at every stage so the automation system has to be self-sufficient.
Today it is highly impossible to have a super specialty hospital without having hospital management system in place. The backbone to a very successful medical centre is a cost reliable, cost effective and efficient system. Therefore there are a whole lot of benefits in installing full-fledged hospital management system software. For a hospital to be considered as top preferred and high rated there is no possible way of escaping from implementing hospital management system. For a hospital to operate more efficiently in this technologically driven age, it is inevitable for it not to use a qualitative and effective system to manage their operations with resource uniformity and a very secure and uncompromisable database. Basically top insurance and medical companies rely on electronic data, so they would find it easy to work with hospitals that have an automated system in place rather than a manual system as they presume there are fewer errors with automated system and the possibility of data manipulation is very low. A hospital capable of sending and receiving patient’s information and medical reports without any hitch are bound to get a higher preference over others.
There has being an analysis by experts which proofs and has being highlighted that hospitals that rely on basically manual systems are more vulnerable, defenseless and exposed to data burglary, vandalism and leakage compared to the automated systems. A fully fledged hospital management system keeps every bit of information secured from unauthorized access. It is important that the system is implemented with a centralized control. Everything is bound to be handled by an access controlled system, where availability of information depends on user clearance and level, in this case there is less possibility of error and things are monitored by system administrators.
In Nigeria, many hospitals are still using the manual system as most are still not aware of hospital management system. There hasn’t being any problem concerning hospital management system from my research as majority of the hospitals do not use it or neither are they aware of it. The major problem now would be the implementation of the system in the hospitals as there would have to be some intensive training and adaptation process for the workers to help them get used to the newly implemented hospital management system and gradually start to reduce the rate at which the manual system is used. In other words, the project must be simple with a very user friendly interface to ensure effective and easy learning after which some additional features and upgrade would be made.
The goal of this project is to create a user friendly interface to help ease data processing and information storage which would to effective management in hospitals and help in securing personal information of both staffs and patients as only those with clearance would be able to access certain information. Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta, Ogun state, Nigeria is my point of reference in this project.
Existing system refers to the system that is being followed till now or a system that is still in the market. Presently most hospitals functions are done manually using papers.
Limitations of existing system
There are some limitations on the existing system which is the manual system, a few which include:
• There is lack of security for data and information.
• It is time consuming.
• There is a large volume of paper work consumption.
• Calculation could be error prone as manual calculation are error prone and take a whole whole lot of time this may result in incorrect details
• It is always very tasking to prepare accurate and prompt report as information has to be collected from various registers.
• Loss of data is recurrent in the existing system.
The main objectives of the project are:
• To create a friendly user interface.
• Smooth transition of paper based manual system to automated system.
• To reduce time consumption and bring out more efficiency.
• To help reduce workload and man power.
• To help in record maintenance.
• To offer high level security of information
• To create an interface with login name and password so that only valid user can access the system.
• To increase accuracy.
• To increase reliability, with the proposed system in place there would be proper storage of information.
• The proposed system is aimed at making economic use of storage place making sure information is not repeated anywhere.
• Finally global accessibility
The proposed system is aimed at provide quick and efficient of information. The limitation for this proposed system is that login and password is used for identification of user and there is no facility for guest.
This project would be achieved by involving all I have learnt in courses I have taken as a management information system student. This course include
Microsoft Visual Basic 2010
Microsoft word (This May be excluded in the final version).
The project will consist of at least four modules but then I intend on making about five or six which will be implemented in the final project. I intend to use a waterfall model for this project. This model is a one of the many models I learnt during my software engineering principles course. It is one of the most used system development cycle in software engineering. It is often referred to as the classic approach. This model has five phases which are:
The advantage of this model is that it is simple and easy to understand and use, it is also easy to manage due to the rigidity of the model (each phase has specific deliverables and a review process) avoiding overlapping or iterative steps.
The disadvantage is that once the application is in its testing stage it is very difficult to go back and change something that was not well thought of in the concept stage.
The programs that will be used to implement this program are:
Microsoft Visual Basic 2010: This will be used for creating the user friendly interface for the project which I talked about in the introduction. This will consist of a user interface, an interactive page where the employees with access gets to update and access information they are cleared to access.
MySQL : This is an open source relation database management system. This is where the database of the Hospital management system is created and managed. Data and information entered in the visual basic interface are held and secured in the database and would only be accessed or edited by the main administrator
Microsoft word 2010 : this will be used for printing out the report (soft copy) if needed.
This project would contain and about four to six modules, each module having its own sub modules with the highest sub module being the admin page. Each sub module would be directly related to its own module.
The diagram below shows a basic flow chart of the main modules of the project.
1. Login Form
The login form is basically for security purpose and this form is used to secure the hospital data and/or the patient data. The login form contains user name and password. The system administrator is responsible for the upkeep, configuration and reliable operation of the system. He/she is the one in charge of the database of the system. The admin is the one that would give each employee allowed to access the system username and password which would allow them access to wherever the clearance is allowed. The login form comprises of a combobox where different username can be seen when it is clicked and each username has different password set by the admin. If a doctor chooses doctor from the enter username combobox he only sees only details related to his job other details are hidden from the doctor hence the hospital database is secured. In this situation data is retrieved from the database when user login so that only the related that would be shown to the respective user. User’s password can only be changed by the administrator so if perhaps any user/employee forgets the password he/she has to write to the main admin requesting for the password. Because of this login form hospital management would be easier than the early days where people had to go through records manually and sometimes in the process see others personal information. The diagram below shows how the login page would look like
2. Admin Page
This page is basically for the system administrator, if the admin logs in successfully with the right username and password from the login form another form opens which is the admin page. This page gives access to the data base and something’s are allowed to be edited from here. This page would include patient registration, patient information, patient checkout, add room information, add new ward, staff information, add user information, add new user, doctors list, the close button which closes the whole application while the logout button which returns user to the login form.
This diagram below shows the admin page and its sub modules.
3. Nurse Page
This form is loaded when the nurses username and password is successfully logged in. This form contains patient registration, patient information, patient checkout, room information and doctors available also with a close and logout button. The interface for this is also similar to the admin page and the form just beneath admin page but with less sub modules and is related to only functions that are meant for nurses.
4. Finance Page
This form is loaded when personnel successfully logs in from the login form with the username and password assigned to the finance department. This form contains account and finance related things. It is also alike to the admin page with same layout but would have less sub modules.
As time advances and I move forward with the implementation some other features would be added which may or may not include pharmacy module, ambulance unit and others.
This project and the planned system is intended to help replace the existing method of sorting, handling, searching and safe keeping of hospital records. This clearly state and concludes on the importance and vital essence of the computer and its application in medical centers. The database is basically focused on reducing paper work and man power in the reception area by reducing the waiting time of patients who request for the retrieval of their files it also helps to subsequently reduce the space occupied by the files and provide enough security for both patients’ medical records, personal information and also staffs information. This project would help resolve the problem being encountered while using the current manual method to keep patient medical report. The project and study critically stated the importance associated with using automated electronic system to keep hospital records in other to avoid missing files and allow efficient retrieval of patient’s record, this project would also have a graphical user interface making it meet one of the major purpose as I stated, with the interface (GUI) it becomes more user friendly as I have specified. This project will eliminate inefficiency associated with the manual method. When this project is implemented and built it is recommended that hospitals and other medical centers adopt this system for effective operations.
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