A Conceptual Data Model for a Primary Healthcare Patient-Centric Electronic Medical Record System

Paula Kotzé and Rosemary Foster


Primary healthcare, e-health, patient-centric health information systems, public health informatics


The development and use of national guidelines for the exchange of patient-centric healthcare data from electronic medical record systems are essential for the consistent and efficient use and analysis of those data. These guidelines must be based on a core national data model. This paper proposes a basic conceptual data model for primary healthcare patient-centric electronic medical record systems, derived for the South African district health system context, which would provide a suitable set of information to ensure continuity and longitudinality of patient-centric healthcare information. The data model was compiled based on the characteristics of the district –based primary healthcare model, data collected from best practices internationally regarding continuity of care, typical healthcare protocols, a study of public healthcare district hospital information systems and both public and private primary healthcare information systems.

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