This month’s E-Health Insider industry round-up covers news about system deployments, company partnerships, product launches and other developments in healthcare IT.

Allocate Software launches expenses module

Allocate Software has launched an expenses module to help ease the administrative burden for staff entering, approving and processing expense claims. Paul Scandrett, director of healthcare at Allocate said: “We understand the complexity of specific payment rules and the variations that occur; this makes it a time consuming and lengthy process to ensure that staff are reimbursed correctly and in a timely manner.”

COA Solutions partner with SMART

Business applications provider COA Solutions has announced a partnership with workforce management specialist, SMART. The partnership will enable COA to provide its NHS customers will SMART’s workforce management solutions including management, e-rostering and time and attendance software that links to the pay-roll system. Peter Leigh, health sector manager from COA Solutions, said: “As well as helping to reduce absenteeism, which is costing the NHS £3 billion every year, SMART’s solutions have a range of other important cost, efficiency and regulatory benefits, helping NHS organisations to meet tough government targets.”

Simpl develops context management designs for NHS Wales

Simpl has developed two context management designs for NHS Wales to enable thousands of clinicians with single log-on access to new functionally and existing local clinical portals, workstations and applications via the national Welsh Clinical Portal (WCP). Paul Malcolm, EMEA regional director of Simpl, said: “Once integration of the WCP with local, existing applications, portals and workstations – using the new designs – is complete, clinicians across Wales will be able to access patient information using both legacy lab information systems or patient administration systems all from a single point and using a single log-on.”

Alert partners with First DataBank

Alert Life Sciences and First DataBank have announced a new contact that will see SNOMED-compliant e-prescribing rolled out at CircleBath private hospital in February next year. FDB’s Multilex Drug Data File will be integrated with Alert Paper Free Hospital. The solution will check medication about to be prescribed or dispensed against information held in the patient’s electronic health record and trigger on-screen alerts when potential risks arise.

Blackpool and Alert: “done deal”

Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has signed a contract with Alert Life Sciences for an electronic patient record system. At E-Health Insider Live ‘09, Philip Graham, IT director for the trust, confirmed that the contract had been signed on 9 November. “It’s a done deal," he said. "We want to use the solution to support better safer patient care. We are still part of the National Programme [for IT in the NHS], but we want to gain benefits from the Alert system as early as possible.”

Inovem wins Oxfordshire deal

NHS Oxfordshire has announced that is has contracted Inovem to provide web-based software to improve consultations with stakeholders. Inovem Inclusionware will provide the primary care trust with a secure online environment with role-based access so that consultation managers, administrators and stakeholders can be involved when new services are proposed or developed.

Salford saves £500,000 with SMART eRostering

Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust has saved £500,000 by implementing eRostering software from SMART. The trust can now monitor the actual hours that staff have worked against their contracted hours, leading to more accurate timesheets and correct payroll details. The trust says the software is also helping it to target a reduction in requested bank shifts, by giving managers more visibility of unused hours and the ability to reallocate them. The software was introduced 12 months ago.

Allocate launches temporary staff management system

Allocate Software has launched a temporary staffing solution that combines MAPS Bank, BSMS and StaffBank. It says BSMS Trinity delivers a high-performance, one screen one click solution that interoperates with the Electronic Staff Record and other systems for automating the planning of bank and agency staff. Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust, Isle of Wight NHS Trust and Basingstoke and North Hampshire NHS Trust have signed up to purchase or migrate to BSMS Trinity.

TRIP Database releases upgrade

The TRIP Database has gone-live with its latest upgrade. The clinical evidence-based search engine, which has more than 10m visits per year, now includes 300 core clinical journals, improved search results, a community notice board and more than 100,000 medical images. Jon Brassey, co-director at the TRIP Database, said: “Our principal aim is to make it as easy as possible for clinicians to obtain robust answers to their clinical questions. Part of this process is to understand what clinician’s information needs are and our experience in answering over 10,000 clinical questions has given us a unique insight.”

Tunstall launches new products

Tunstall Healthcare has a launched what it describes as a range of next-generation, digital-ready telecare solutions. These include the PNC6, a call monitoring and management system, and the IP Connect+, which for the first time allows users to communicate with monitoring centres using a standard telephone, internet and GSM networks. The company has also previewed CareAssist, a portable alarm that notifies carers of alerts from its full range of telecare sensors.

Telehealth Solutions wins award

A pioneering project on the Isle of Bute has earned Telehealth Solutions, NHS Highland and Argyll & Bute Council, the Innovation and Improvement accolade at this year’s Scottish Health Awards. In January, 15 of the company’s HomePods were installed on Bute, giving GPs the chance to remotely monitor islanders with chronic health conditions. Early evidence suggests the HomePods have avoided hospital admissions, although a structured evaluation with the University of the Highlands and Islands will be conducted shortly.