The Thames Valley Cancer Network has completed the roll out of Aria for Medical Oncology from Varian Medical Systems.

The network, which links cancer centres in Oxford and Reading with district general hospitals in Wiltshire, Buckinghamshire and Berkshire, has implemented the system over a year, with Great Western Hospital in Swindon becoming the latest to take it.

The Aria oncology system is described as providing users with all the tools they need to manage the clinical, administrative and financial activities of a cancer department.

An oncology specific electronic medical record sits at the heart of the system, and allows a personalised care pathway to be designed for all patients, from diagnosis to follow-up. The system manages chemotherapy, drug orders and other orders.

Dr Claire Blessing, consultant clinical oncologist at the Churchill Hospital in Oxford and clinical lead for the project said a particular benefit for the cancer network was that it allows information to be shared between teams.

“We needed something that could be accessed from all hospitals in the Thames Valley Network, without losing data between them,” she said. “This enables a patient to be prescribed initial chemotherapy in one hospital in the network and to have follow-up treatment in another.”

Clinicians in hospitals across the network have made sure that the Aria implementation supports its protocols, for example on e-prescribing. It is now offering to share its regimen library and user guides with other UK users of the system, to speed up implementations elsewhere.

Varian says a further benefit of the system is that it encourages clinicians to work with patients on treatment options and to review progress with them.

Link: Varian Medical Systems.