Leading GP IT system supplier EMIS has unveiled its next generation IT system EMIS Web, promising interoperability with primary and secondary care providers.
EMIS claims the system will set a new standard for the NHS, by enabling clinicians outside general practice to access a patient’s GP medical record, view other patient information recorded on the system, and add to that data.
Patient data will be accessible from non-EMIS systems using an interoperability portal called the Medical Interoperability Gateway (MIG).
GP system suppliers INPS and iSoft and out-of-hours provider Adastra are also to use the MIG to share data, and yesterday EMIS said it was holding talks with other healthcare IT suppliers including Ascribe, Oasis and IMS Maxims.
Local service providers Cerner and CSC have declined to take part, saying it is outside their contractual commitments under the National Programme for IT in the NHS.
The system, which has been in development for five years, is scheduled to receive NHS Connecting for Health accreditation in November. EMIS hopes it will become widely used by GPs in 2010.
Sean Riddell, managing director of EMIS, told EHI Primary Care that EMIS Web would hold the GP patient record plus what would, in effect, be a series of other records, such as a podiatry record, a district nursing record or a record of information supplied by patients.
GPs will be able to see information on other records with patient consent, but will only incorporate the data they want into their own record.
Riddell added: “The main differentiation between EMIS Web and other systems is our concept of one patient and a series of virtual records.”
Data is shared and viewed with explicit patient consent and according to local data sharing agreements.
Outside of general practice the system is already being piloted. Areas using the system include the physiotherapy team at NHS Tower Hamlets, ultrasound services in St Albans, minor surgery and other GPwSI services in Liverpool Primary Care Trust, out-of-hours care in Gateshead and community teams in NHS Cumbria.
Riddell said the company had started to develop EMIS Web outside general practice with patient administration functionality, care pathways and workflow management but that work on the GP development cycle had now finished.
EMIS Web is the first healthcare system to integrate the Microsoft Common User interface and also uses SNOMED CT coding.
The roll-out of EMIS Web has been much anticipated by EMIS practices. The company promised it would make the system available to 1,000 practices on a read-only version from autumn 2006. Riddell said 1,600 practices now have the read-only system running alongside their PCS or LV software.
However, the read-write version will only be available from November when EMIS says the system should be accredited for all CfH programmes, including the Summary Care Record, Release 2 of the Electronic Prescription Service, GP2GP record transfer and Choose and Book.
EMIS has been working with INPS, the second most used GP system in the UK, for two years and INPS is currently testing its use of the MIG in Wales. Out-of-hours software provider Adastra is also ready to use the MIG. Riddell said iSoft had committed to the MIG last week.
He added: “With the addition of iSoft it means that through the MIG we will now be able to provide access to almost 90% of GP records in the UK.”
Link: EMIS Web