Coverage from World of Health IT 2010, Barcelona

The National Patient Overview that is being rolled out across Sweden will be completed by spring 2012, according to one of the project leads.

The NPO, which provides an electronic summary of a patient’s record including information on identity, attentions and alerts, diagnosis, care services and medications, will be fully rolled out in ten county councils in 2010 and a further ten next year.

Speaking to E-Health Europe at the World of Health IT conference in Barcelona, Ante Grubbström, chief information officer at Sörmland county council, said: “If the plans hold out there will be around ten regions going live in 2010 and ten in 2011 and any that are left will go live early in 2012.

“So sometime in the early spring of 2012, everyone in the 21 county councils will be up and running and also the majority of municipalities and private care providers.”

Grubbström added that the majority of the private care providers have contracts with the county councils to supply their services to the population and many are mandated to share information across organisational borders using the NPO.

“We haven’t written the name of the product that they have to do this with into the contract, but they will have to support the NPO and there is really no other way,” he said.

Sweden signed a four year deal with InterSystems and Tieto to provide and implement the system in 2008. Grubbström says the system is is jointly financed, so each county council is paying for it according to the size of their populaion, whether they wish to use it or not.

In June last year, Eva Leach Elfgren, project manager of the National Patient Summary project, told EHE that the Örebro County Council had become the first to connect to the NPO and that there would be an additional three county councils joining by the end of 2009.

“This is not the case. We had around three county councils working to deploy but no more were using it by the end of 2009,” Grubbström said.

Britt Marie, who is involved in the operation of the NPO in Örebro said: “The system is already improving patient safety, shortening lead times and preventing unnecessary transport.”

Örebro county council is now working with the Örebro University to evaluate the benefits, while rolling it out further in the 11 municipalities in the region and helping with the further roll-out in other areas.