The NHS trust that was meant to be the pilot site for the National Programme for IT version of iSoft’s Evolution Maternity Information System, has given up waiting for its delayed NPfIT system and implemented an alternative system bought off the shelf.

Royal Shrewsbury Hospital NHS Trust, Shropshire has been waiting for almost two years for its local service provider Computer Sciences Corporation to implement iSoft’s Evolution MIS.The trust has now deployed the Eclipse system from Huntleigh Diagnostics in a bid to save up to £0.5m annually through reduced clinical negligence liability costs.

Maternity is meant to form a core part of the strategic Care Record Service solutions delivered by LSPs.

The trust, which is also the national reference site for the maternity ‘do once and share’ project has told EHI it felt it could no longer wait for the repeatedly delayed Evolution system. A CSC deployment of the iSoft supplied maternity system was begun and then shelved in 2005.

Last June, their local service provider, Computer Sciences Corporation told the trust that the software would be available in autumn 2006.

E-Health Insider contacted the trust to see if they had received a deployment date from CSC for the Evolution system, after the LSP indicated that they would be ready by the end of this month.

However, the trust told EHI they were no longer deploying Evolution, but had gone out to tender for a new system in order to help the trust achieve the Clinical Negligence Scheme for Trusts (CNST) level three.

Dr Adam Gornall, consultant in foetal medicine and leader the maternity IT project at Shrewsbury and is the national lead for NPfIT’s ‘do once and share’ maternity programme confirmed to EHI that the trust were no longer waiting for the NPfIT system, but had instead bought an alternative.

A Royal Shrewsbury Hospital spokesperson told EHI: “The trust wants to achieve CNST level 3 by the end of the year as one of our key objectives. We did not feel that waiting for the national programme system would help us achieve that. The tendering process is now near completion and we will be announcing the chosen supplier shortly.”

The CNST Maternity Standards apply to trusts providing labour ward services. They assess the way risk management activities are organised in these important services, focusing on areas such as communication, clinical care and staffing levels.

The CNST Standards are divided into three “levels”: one, two and three. Trusts which achieve success at level one in the relevant standards receive a 10% discount on their CNST contributions, with discounts of 20% and 30% available to those passing the higher levels. Where trusts are subject to assessment under both the NHS Litigation Authority Acute (or PCT) and Maternity Standards the discount will be applied to the relevant portion of their contributions.

A Huntleigh Diagnostics spokesperson told EHI: “eClipse MIS is a fully developed solution that meets all the clinical information requirements of busy maternity units. This covers both traditional needs such as comprehensive electronic maternity records and replacement of hand written patient documents through to the more “futuristic” requirements of rule based clinical support and fully integrated real time patient monitoring.

“eClipse has been designed for rapid implementation and rapid customisation. For example we installed the Shrewsbury system the week after the order arrived and began training two weeks later. The inevitable adjustments required to suit local processes can be implemented within a very short time.”

The team behind the Huntleigh Eclipse MIS includes many of the individuals behind the Protos MIS system, which was bought by Torex in 2001. Torex was then bought by iSoft in 2003 and became a legacy product with focus instead switching to the strategic Lorenzo product.

CSC, local service provider to the North-east, Eastern, and North-west and West Midlands clusters, told EHI: “The Evolution solution is due to be released this month. CSC are currently working with potential early adopters of the solution from a group of trusts.” The LSP declined to disclose where the pilot sites would be.

An iSoft spokesman told EHI: “iSoft is currently upgrading its Evolution maternity application in response to customer needs. We are committed to providing ongoing development and support for Evolution and its users both within the national programme and elsewhere.”

To date CSC has delivered a spine connected version of iSoft’s legacy iPM patient administration system to trusts in the North West and West Midlands.  The LSP, which in January also became LSP for the North East and Eastern regions, now plans to also deliver iSoft’s iCM clinical system from later this year. The strategic Lorenzo product is now not due to begin first stages of delivery until 2008, when Lorenzo 3.5 is due to become available.