Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust has become the first in the country to go-live with a Cerner Millennium Release 1 Care Records System. 

The trust went live with the new Patient Administration System, delivered by local service provider BT, over the weekend, and will be using it for accident and emergency, order communications, inpatient, maternity, theatre and outpatient records.

Royal Free is the first trust to receive the London Cluster Release 1 system, which is Spine compliant. In addition to the modules available in R0, it also includes clinical documentation, care pathways maintenance and planning, theatre assistance, and analytics functionality.

A BT spokesperson confirmed the go-live was completed successfully over the weekend and is the first LC1 site in the country. Thirteen trusts are already using R0, five in London and eight in the south of England.

In a statement, the trust said: “Patients at Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust will be among the first in London to benefit from a new computer system that will provide electronic patient records as part of the National Programme for IT.

“The go-live of the Care Records Service is proceeding well, with areas coming online one by one. A&E and some wards have now been live for 24 hours and more wards are coming online today. Out-patient clinics will come online in the next 24 hours. Pathology and radiology are also online with live order communications and results reporting.”

“The new computer system will manage patient admission, transfer and discharge details. It will also be used to track patients through A&E and for scheduling in our theatres. Blood tests and x-rays will be ordered electronically” it added.

In the statement aimed at the public and general press, the trust added: “Our staff have been fully trained to use the system but as with anything new, it will take us time to get used to the way it works. Please be patient with us.”

The trust will also be the first to be able to use national programme smartcards with the Cerner CRS. The go-live followed an earlier glitch during the dress rehearsal weekend at the end of May.

Chief executive Andrew Way told the trust board this had been “due to errors made during the building/application of clinics, which caused huge amounts of ‘displaced’ patients with no appointment slot.”

The trust has now set up a command centre in the hospital with more than 40 BT and Cerner staff on hand to assist staff who experience problems with the system.

Awareness sessions and refresher courses have also been made available to all staff, and a high profile communications exercise has been launched by the trust to ensure patients are aware of the changes.

In a statement provided to E-Health Insider Cerner said: "The Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust is on track to complete a successful implementation of the Care Records Service (CRS) London Cluster one (LC1) version.

"Cerner is working closely with the Trust and BT, and is continuing to provide on-site technical and senior-level support to ensure that Trust staff can use the system effectively for the benefit of patients.

"The trust is the first to install LC1, which offers additional functionality to the system than has been installed in other London acute trusts."

Last week, E-Health Insider reported that NHS London’s CIO, Kevin Jarrold, confidently predicted that BT would install five CRS systems before the end of the calendar year, and that it would have 15 acute systems in place by the end of the financial year.

St Mary’s Hospital – part of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust – is scheduled to be the next trust to receive the R1 system.