NHS Hammersmith and Fulham has gone live with an interactive website designed to improve the information that it provides.

The primary care trust, whose previous website was designed and developed in-house more than four years ago, has developed the site with charity Eduserv, which develops and delivers technology services within the public sector.

The new website includes features such as a local service finder that allows users to work out how far services are from where they live, a drop down navigation, improved search, a rate this page section and a news area.

Tom Stevenson, the PCT’s head of communications, said: “Before we had to rely on one person in the team who had the IT skills needed to update the content. If they were away or busy updates had to wait.

“The content of the site was very static and it was hard for people to find what they were looking for. We needed a site that was simple for users to navigate and could be easily managed by non-technical staff.”

NHS Hammersmith and Fulham said the new design is the first step to improving its online information for its 178,000 residents.

Further plans for 2010 are to include performance information on GPs and other services, the ability to comment on and rate local NHS services and community forums for local people living with long-term health conditions.

The PCT is also considering an extranet for GPs, templates for GP websites and features such as online appointment booking and prescription management.

Stevenson added: “The site looks a lot more up-to-date, is easier to use and more useful for residents. It has also made a huge change to the way the site is managed within our team."

NHS Hammersmith and Fulham is now asking its patients for ideas for additional information or functions that they would like to see.