The benefits to patients of new IT systems in London, delivered under the NHS IT programme, has been attracting international interest in London, which was recently visited by the Singapore Ministry of Health.

The Singapore Ministry of Health officials saw London’s first step on the journey towards the national electronic shared health care record system, which will enable health professionals working in primary and community care to share information and work more effectively together.

Health officials from Singapore visited Richmond and Twickenham Primary Care Trust (PCT) to see how staff at the PCT are benefitting from shared electronic patient records, using a system called RiO provided by BT, the prime contractor for the NHS IT programme in London.

Richmond and Twickenham Primary Care Trust was one of the first of the thirty-one PCTs in London to have completed a trust-wide switch to electronic records using CSE Servelec’s RiO system. CSE Servelec is a sub-contractor to BT in London, providing systems for shared community and mental health records.

The Singaporean delegation saw, first hand at the PCT, how RiO supports administrative and clinical tasks including shared records, which support the PCT’s care professionals working across the community.

Managers from the PCT said that RiO enables them to actively plan their team caseloads and have instant access to up-to-date patient information, which improves the level of care and relieves some of the demand for hospital beds. Patients can then be referred to other services from within RiO.

Graham Obeney, associate director of information management at Richmond and Twickenham PCT said, “RiO has been extremely well received by the PCT. It replaces several outdated legacy systems including ones that were paper based, making it much simpler and faster for our clinicians and their managers to access data across care settings and manage their workloads, enabling the delivery of more integrated and co-ordinated care.”

Alan Stubbs, Managing Director for CSE Servelec said “I am delighted that the Ministry of Health has chosen to visit the UK and had the opportunity to see how RiO has been deployed across London. It is very encouraging for us to see that our system has international appeal.”