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Primary Care

The Manitoba Primary Care Information Collaborative and Primary Care Data Repository

Questions & Answers


What is the Manitoba Primary Care Information Collaborative?

The Manitoba Primary Care Information Collaborative will be a partnership of primary health care stakeholders, Manitoba Health and Manitoba eHealth, working together to ensure that electronic medical record data submissions result in value-added information and reporting for all primary care stakeholders.

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Who will participate in the Collaborative?

The Collaborative will be comprised of primary care stakeholders reflecting a variety of practice settings (RHA-based, community-based, rural, urban, northern, fee-for-service, alternately funded, etc) and roles (family physicians, nurse practitioners, primary care nurses, primary care allied health team members, primary care practice managers, etc).   Primary care stakeholders can participate in the Collaborative as follows:

General Member

All clinician recipients of EMR Adoption Program funding will automatically be designated as general members of the Collaborative. Clinicians who are not enrolled in the EMR adoption program, but would like to participate in the Collaborative, are requested to self-identify. General members of the collaborative will have access to regular analytic and comparative data reports to support clinical decision-making and quality in their practices, as well as other benefits described below. 

Representative Member

Representative members of the Collaborative are comprised of general members playing an active role in guiding and informing primary care data reporting to ensure it reflects the needs of the general membership. Representative members will be comprised of up to 20 primary care clinicians and stakeholders from a variety of practice settings and roles. Representative members will meet a minimum of twice yearly to discuss and determine information and reporting requirements which reflect the needs of the general membership. General members wishing to participate as representative members are encouraged to submit their names along with a peer reference to support the nomination.

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What is the Manitoba Primary Care Data Repository?

The Manitoba Primary Care Data Repository is a secure database of primary care data, submitted by Primary Care clinicians using EMRs, pursuant to agreements and privacy protocols.  The data repository is administered by Manitoba Health - Information Management & Analytics branch who ensure secure data transfer, storage, access and analysis in accordance with The Personal Health Information Act (PHIA). The Repository presently stores Provincial Primary Care Quality Indicator data submitted by group practices participating in the Physician Integrated Network (PIN) initiative, and is expanding to include other clinics.

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How will submitting data to the Primary Care Data Repository Benefit Clinicians?

Submitting data to the primary care data repository will benefit clinicians by:

Helping you Evaluate the Health Services you Provide

Building on information analysis and reporting processes established to support clinicians participating in the Physician Integrated Network (PIN) initiative, submission of data to the primary care data repository will result in reporting of your data back to you (and/or your clinic dependant on practice organization) to assist you in providing high-quality health services to your patients. PIN clinicians have indicated the value of these indicator reports to their practice as follows:

“We found that data itself is motivating…When we make an intervention, it’s nice to have data to know if it’s worked.” Dr. Mark Duerksen, Family Physician, Steinbach Family Medical Centre

Primary Care reports will include information such as:

  • the characteristics of your patient population, allowing you to plan and target your services to your patients’ needs,
  • your group practice’s achievement on Provincial Primary Care Quality Indicators, allowing you to evaluate your services and identify opportunities for change, 
  • comparative analytic reports, based on data from all submitting clinicians, allowing you to assess your achievement relative to your peers across the province.  The identity of peer clinicians and group practices will be anonymized and all patient information will be aggregated

Supporting EMR Data Quality

Reporting will provide feedback on missing or invalid data in data submissions, allowing clinics to improve EMR data quality and therefore patient care, improve the validity of the reports generated from EMR data, and correct data errors that could have an impact on billings.  

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How will participating in the Primary Care Information Collaborative Benefit Clinicians?

Participating in the primary care information collaborative will benefit clinicians by:

Ensuring EMR Data Submission results in Value-Added Information for Clinicians

Clinicians know best what information they need to inform their practice. Through participation in the Collaborative, clinicians can ensure that EMR data submissions adequately and accurately result in information they can use in day to day practices.

Supporting EMR Optimization

The Primary Care Information System (PCIS) office of Manitoba eHealth will be available to support clinicians with the process of adopting and optimizing an EMR.  Through its participation in the Collaborative, PCIS will have an opportunity to understand the ways in which clinicians are using EMRs. This understanding will help identify areas for EMR system improvements and will support the development of programs aimed at helping clinicians take full advantage of EMRs, streamline electronic collection of data, and seamlessly integrate EMRs into their daily routines.

Primary Care Renewal

Participation in the Collaborative will place group practices in a greater position of readiness to participate in Provincial primary care renewal initiatives, such as the My Health Teams and the Physician Integrated Network (PIN) initiative, that include routine quality indicator measurement as a key component.

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How will the Primary Care Information Collaborative Benefit Manitobans?

The provision of data reports to clinicians (as described above) will help clinicians 1) better assess the needs of their patient population, 2) enable planning to address these needs, and 3) result in information that will help clinicians self-evaluate the services they provide.   

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What is the Limited Primary Care Dataset?

The limited primary care dataset will, initially, be focused on:

  • data required to demonstrate optimal clinical use of EMRs, as is required to determine eligibility for a portion of the funding available from the EMR Adoption Program; and
  • a core set of Provincial Primary Care Quality Indicators, currently used by physicians involved with the Physician Integrated Network (PIN) initiative and derived from the Canadian Institute for Health Information’s (CIHI) Primary Care Indicators.   

Changes to the limited data set will be informed by changes in national primary care data standards and by input from members of the Collaborative.

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How will the Data in the Primary Care Data Repository be Used?

Data submitted to the Manitoba Primary Care Data Repository will be used by Manitoba Health primarily to generate analytic reports for general members of the Collaborative. These reports are intended to inform clinical decision-making and quality in primary care. Clinicians, through their participation in the Collaborative, will inform use of data for these purposes.

Manitoba Health will also use the data to perform analysis and reporting on population health, and planning, delivery and evaluation of provincial primary care initiatives.  Regional health authorities will use data about their own programs to plan, deliver and evaluate regional services.

Finally, Manitoba Health & Manitoba eHealth will use the data to determine conformance with EMR Adoption Program funding requirements. 

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What is my Authority to Disclose Patient Information to the Manitoba Primary Care Data Repository?

Section 22(2) of The Personal Health Information Act (PHIA) authorizes the disclosure of personal health information:

(g) for the purpose of

(i) delivering, evaluating or monitoring a program of the trustee [e.g. a health care provider] that relates to the provision of health care or payment for health care.

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How Will the Data be Protected?

Data submitted to the Manitoba Primary Care Data Repository is stored and maintained in Manitoba eHealth’s secure data storage environment. Strict security safeguards exist to ensure the ongoing protection of the data at all points throughout its transmission and storage. Data will be encrypted during transmission, maintained behind a firewall, and only accessible to a limited number of authorized and qualified staff who are required to take and abide by a Pledge of Confidentiality as a condition of employment.

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Will the Data be Shared?

Data submitted to the Manitoba Primary Care Data Repository will only be disclosed in accordance with Manitoba privacy legislation.  Some examples might be:

  • to an entity that is undertaking analysis on behalf of Manitoba Health,
  • to the organization that submitted the data, to support the planning, delivery and evaluation of its own services, as described above,
  • in aggregate form to organizations such as regional health authorities, responsible for health service planning and delivery to support their mandate,
  • in aggregate form, to members of the Collaborative to support the purposes described above,
  • if necessary to support direct quality care to a patient,
  • if the disclosure is required by law,
  • with consent of the patient or provider (as the case may be).

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Who Can I Contact for More Information?

Additional information on the Manitoba Primary Care Information Collaborative and the Primary Care Data Repository will be posted on the Manitoba Health Primary Health Care website in the coming months.

If you have questions about the collection, maintenance and analysis of data submitted to the Manitoba Primary Care Data Repository, please contact the Information Management & Analytics branch of Manitoba Health at IMAInfo@gov.mb.ca.

If you have questions about programs and services available to support clinicians in their adoption and optimization of EMRs, please contact the Manitoba eHealth Primary Care Information System Office at PCISOffice@manitoba-ehealth.ca.

If you would like to participate as a representative member in the Collaborative, please contact the Health System Innovation Branch of Manitoba Health via email at phc@gov.mb.ca.

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