Blackpool tower
Blackpool tower

Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust looks set to partner with Alert Life Sciences to supply its new electronic patient record system.

The trust’s EPR project has now been named Vision by trust staff. A staff bulletin issued on Monday says: “The information governance committee has accepted the recommendation of the Vision evaluation team to appoint Alert Life Sciences as the recommended supplier of the trust’s new electronic patient record system.”

The newsletter says the supplier was chosen after a “rigorous evaluation” by a team of health care professionals from key disciplines across the trust that “covered a wide range of aspects based on lists of needs provided by our staff at the beginning of the process.”

In August, the trust told E-Health Insider that it believed it was the first to use the Additional Supply Capability and Capacity (ASCC) framework catalogue to select such services.

It said it wanted to retain its own IMS patient administration system but layer-in high level EPR components including e-prescribing, care pathways, scheduling, order communications and documentation from within the ASCC, to deliver the benefits of an EPR as early as possible.

The trust said that giving the task to its local service provider, CSC, was not an option as Lorenzo, the iSoft EPR that CSC is due to deliver under the National Programme for IT in the NHS, was not “suitably available” at the time.

However, it also said its ASCC procurement will be an interim solution, while it continues to wait for Lorenzo to become more available and stable.

Philip Graham, head of IM&T at the trust confirmed that Alert had been accepted as the recommended supplier. He told EHI: “We have accepted the recommended supplier pending trust board ratification.

“The trust, Alert and ProHealth Associates [an external healthcare IT consultancy] are currently working on a full business case and implementation plan for the trust board.

“The trust business case is locally resourced, although we are keeping a watchful eye on any precedents set elsewhere on the use of the ASCC. The full business case is very much benefits driven and the trust is confident that it will provide excellent value for money.”

The newsletter continues: “The Vision project team will be maintaining their work by creating a full business case for the board and exercising a period of ‘due diligence’ whereby we, as the customers, review the contracts to ensure full accuracy.

“The trust is set for a period of major change. The use of an electronic patient record system around the trust will affect everyone, but will produce huge benefits as regards patient care and safety.”

The final decision will be taken to the trust’s full board meeting on 28 October, for final ratification and agreement.

Aidan Kehoe, chief executive of the trust, told the newsletter: “These are exciting times for the trust as Vision will bring major benefits in terms of quality of service we provide to our patients.

"Vision is one of our key enablers and will complement our other major initiatives such as the continuous improvement work and all that is being done to improve patient safety.”

Links: Alert Life Sciences