In practice

The intervention of several doctor from various fields, providing a broad spectrum of healthcare and prescriptions for medications or examinations, can lead to an increasingly complex situation for the patient suffering from complex health issues or a severe, chronic or long-term condition.
The primary care doctor is the most accessible and the best informed contact person for their patients and plays therefore an important role to assist, accompany and guide them throughout their life.

The primary care doctor, whose missions can be assumed by general practitioners or paediatricians, takes on the task of coordinating their patient's healthcare and making sure that the medical follow-up is optimal.  An important tool to guarantee this is the shared healthcare file (Dossier de soins partagé DSP). The DSP is an electronic healthcare file, personal and secure, which the patient receives when choosing a primary care doctor. Each healthcare provider involved in a patient's care and who has been given access by the patient can add healthcare data which he deems important, such as analyses results, detailed reporting from consultations or hospitalisations or prescriptions received. The content, managed and regularly reviewed by the primary care doctor together with the patient, allows the primary care doctor to coordinate the patient's care and better guide them through their medical journey.

The primary care doctor also promotes exchange and sharing of health data within the DSP with other healthcare professionals involved in a patient's care. He assembles, centralises and organises the data relating to the patient's health, and adds information he deems necessary to the DSP. This can help the patient not only to reduce the dangers of duplicating medications, consultations and unnecessary examinations/analyses, but also to optimise their intake of medications.

The patient summary

The primary care doctor drafts the patient summary ("résumé patient") which contains the main data concerning the patient's health. As soon as the primary care doctor relationship is effective, the CNS adds to the DSP a summary of services ("résumé des prestations"), containing a list of all prescriptions and examinations and which - along with medical records, reports and summaries from other doctors - constitutes the basis for drafting the patient summary.

The primary care doctor updates the DSP with the patient summary, hence sharing it with other healthcare professionals who have access to the DSP.

If the patient requests it, the primary care doctor explains the content of the patient summary and provides a free copy. The primary care doctor must update the patient summary in the DSP following every contact with the patient, adding any new clinical or therapeutic information relevant to the patient's state of health that may be useful in coordinating healthcare services provided by other health professionals.

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