Four healthcare providers in Abu Dhabi start using the Malaffi HIE platform

The vision for Malaffi is to ultimately connect over 2,000 public and private healthcare providers in Abu Dhabi.
By Leontina Postelnicu
05:00 AM

Clinicians at four healthcare providers in Abu Dhabi are now able to exchange and access information about their patients after the go-live of the first-of-its-kind Health Information Exchange (HIE) platform in the Middle East.

Malaffi, which stands for “My file” in Arabic, became operational at the end of July, half a year after a contract was signed between Abu Dhabi Health Data Services (ADHDS) and New Zealand technology solutions supplier Orion Health.

ADHDS was set up as a public-private partnership (PPP) between the Abu Dhabi Department of Health and Injazat Data Systems, which is a subsidiary of the Mubadala global investment company.

SEHA, the Abu Dhabi Health Services company, is one of the four providers where authorised clinicians now have access to Malaffi. It owns all public hospitals and clinics in the capital of the United Arab Emirates.

The other three are the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, a large tertiary hospital that is a partnership between the US Cleveland Clinic and Mubadala, Danat El Emarat, a women’s and children’s hospital part of United Eastern Medical Services, and Oasis, reportedly the first hospital to be founded in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in 1960.

WHY IT MATTERS

The vision for Malaffi is to connect over 2,000 public and private healthcare providers in Abu Dhabi, being one of the Department of Health’s strategic priorities. At the moment, the database contains around up to five years of demographic and clinical data for 2.3 million patients from the four providers’ electronic health record systems.

As other hospitals join the initiative, more information will be added to the platform, and a patient portal and analytics services are expected to be rolled out next year.

“Malaffi is built based on advanced security measures that comply with federal and local security standards, to store and exchange patient’s personal information safely and securely. Next year, we will be launching a patient portal which will allow patients to have direct access to their Malaffi file from their mobile phones,” Robert Denson, SVP of operations and technology for Malaffi, said at the HIMSS UAE e-Health Week in Dubai this March.

THE LARGER TREND

The Abu Dhabi Department of Health is putting in motion a series of initiatives to accelerate the use of digital solutions that would improve delivery of care and outcomes for patients. In January, it announced the launch of an AI lab at the Arab Health conference, focusing on four areas: wellness and prevention, chronic disease management, clinical care, and regulatory management.

ON THE RECORD

“The speed at which Malaffi has moved from contract to go-live is a tribute to everybody involved,” said Ian McCrae, founder and CEO of Orion Health. “There is no doubt that the information sharing that it will make possible will benefit clinicians and patients, and we look forward to working on further releases of the project that are so important for the people of Abu Dhabi.

“Malaffi is also the first health information exchange to go-live in the Middle East, where there is a dynamic health tech market showing considerable interest in population health management. We fully expect to see further health information exchanges developed in the region, and hope to be able to contribute our leading software solutions and expertise to them,” McCrae added.