Information management for healthcare professionals, or what has IT ever done for us?
The individual healthcare professional has a number of professional obligations around the use and management of information. All healthcare professionals are required to embrace information technology (IT) where it can be shown to have benefits for patients, and they do so properly to ensure that no harm comes to patients. IT can also provide rapid access to best evidence. There is a series of websites dedicated to help find the best treatments for patients. One of the most comprehensive is the National Library for Health through which, the clinician has a wide range of resources available to help inform patient choice. The use of IT changes the risks to patient records: it also provides new opportunities for managing risks. Paper-based records have always been at risk of accidental damage through the threats of fire and flood. However, the most significant difference is that the technology can provide a means of managing the risks.