Concern over the follow-up care patients receive after hospitals discharge them has led a surgeon to devise a system for sharing information with welfare authorities and care services.

"The treatment of patients does not end at the hospital. Collaboration is thus indispensable," said neurosurgeon Masaaki Mizuno, a professor at the Center for Advanced Medicine and Clinical Research at Nagoya University Hospital.

Mizuno developed the Electronic@Contact Book system to help patients with chronic diseases or disabilities who are in need of not only doctor visits, but nursing care and welfare services as well. The system is gaining widespread use in central Japan.