About Clinical Informatics
Landmark reports from USA suggested that a health informatics infrastructure was needed to cross the quality chasm in clinical practice. Without an effective information system it is hard and expensive to audit quality and conduct research based on routine clinical data. The Clinical Informatics & Health Outcomes Research group at the University of Oxford currently, and University of Surreey in the past, has been involved in a wide range of projects over the last 15 years around how technology can enable quality and support the implementation of clinical governance.
Computerised clinical systems can potentially provide a large amount of clinical data which can be used for research and to measure quality improvement. However, this is not straight forward for several reasons:
The Clinical Informatics & Health Outcomes Research Group works within this space. Our main areas of research are understanding how clinical conditions are represented in computerised records (case finding); extracting and aggregating data from primary care computer systems though increasingly from other parts of the health system – hospitals and clinics; so that we can conduct cross-sectional though increasingly cohort and case-control studies. We have also used these technologies to recruit patients meeting inclusion criteria for surveys or clinical trials.