Over the last 50 years, the application of health informatics and research has been one of the most important factors in measuring outcomes of care for cancer patients. However, in developing countries like Egypt, data capture is difficult due to vast population numbers, lack of accurate medical records, and insufficient knowledge, therefore, resulting in deficits in data capture, outcome statistics, and patient results.

Health Informatics: Helping Children with Cancer through Research

Hello. My name is Ranin Soliman from Cairo, Egypt, a Walden University master’s student in health informatics. I work as a clinical research specialist in renal tumors and bone tumors in a non-profit charity hospital that is funded entirely from donations and treats children with cancer free of charge, based on the high standards of care and state-of-the-art technology in the diagnosis and treatment. It’s my passion for helping children with cancer and a desire to make a difference in their lives that encouraged me to study health informatics at Walden University to be a scholar of change. I directly apply the knowledge and skills I gain in my work in clinical research to improve patient outcomes. Having the advantage to work in this hospital, which is the only district hospital in Egypt, that uses an electronic medical record for the review of patient care, I am able to make secondary use of the patient data for researching purposes.

My study of health informatics at Walden University, helped me design standardized, well-structured databases for renal tumors and bone tumors that act as a centralized reference for all patient-related and treatment-related information. After that, I am able to extract the data automatically for statistical analysis, to measure and compare patient outcomes of care, calculate survival rate for each type of cancer, and, accordingly, do further research to identify new opportunities for improvement. And that’s what’s known as evidence-based medicine—using solid conclusions from clinical research for better clinical decision making.

I believe knowledge is most valuable when put into action for the greater good. That’s why I participated in educational activities to inspire others about that knowledge. I was involved in an initiative called Medical Informatics Saving Kids to maximize the utilization of electronic medical records to enhance patient safety, reduce medical errors, and really help save children with cancer.

It all started with my passion for helping children with cancer, followed by a sense of social responsibility, that I feel I am really taking serious steps to effect positive social change through compassion and commitment.