Optometrists and ophthalmologists can make use of clients' eye health data in Kanta Services in support of treatment. Citizens can also view their records easily in My Kanta Pages.
Today, Kanta Services increasingly contain eye health records, since the large operators in the sector, Silmäasema and Specsavers, have joined Kanta. In addition to eye health records entered by ophthalmologists, the results of eye tests from visits to optometrists are also entered in Kanta Services. This facilitates cooperation between optometrists and ophthalmologists, and the patient's eye health can be comprehensively cared for, nationwide.
Silmäasema adopted Kanta Services as early as the spring of 2018. The optometrist or ophthalmologist enters the records of the visit in Patient Data Repository, from which they are then electronically available at the client's next visit.
"Kanta Services allow immediate access to the client's up-to-date records, which is essential for patient safety. The patient's background information and vision test data are entered in Kanta, as well as the diagnoses and statements made by the ophthalmologist. The service also contains any electronic prescriptions and details of spectacles. The client can view their own eye health records via My Kanta Pages," says Hemmo Salo, Chief Optometrist at Silmäasema.
Optical retailers part of healthcare network
All Specsavers optical retailers joined Kanta Services during the summer and autumn of 2019. The preparations for joining were lengthy, and becoming part of Kanta has also affected the procedures for recording vision tests. A consistent care pathway and access to medical records in one place benefit all parties.
"Eye testing by optometrists is part of healthcare, although it is not always automatically viewed as such. Kanta Services will help optical retailers to be seen more firmly as part of the network with regard to eye health. The more healthcare sector operators join the service, the better the system works and lends itself to utilisation by different care pathways. Patient care improves and the work becomes more efficient when professionals in a treatment situation are able to make use of work and investigations done previously," says Erkki Tala, Country Director at Specsavers.
Eye test results entered in the service include details on e.g. refractive error and intraocular pressure, but modern eye testing increasingly includes also records from imaging, such as of the ocular fundus and OCT imaging. In the future, Kanta Services will permit storage of more imaging records, as well as more accurate optometric records. Records that are as comprehensive as possible are crucial for example in circumstances where there is a change of treatment facility.
Eye health records only utilised in treatment situations
Records entered in Kanta Services may only be handled with the patient's consent, and they may be accessed only by healthcare professionals participating in the patient's treatment. Access to the data in Kanta Services also always requires a certified professional card, so that log data are recorded on every user logged in the system.
Ophthalmologists were already fairly familiar with Kanta Services, and optometrists were trained to use the system before joining Kanta. Using Patient Data Repository and other matters related to Kanta Services are also included in new employees' induction programmes.
"I often tell our optometrists to access My Kanta Pages to check out their own records, so that they can advise clients on how to use it, if necessary. We try to increase clients' awareness of the possibilities inherent in the service, as many of them have not yet discovered it," Salo says.