West Middlesex discharges in RealTime

  • 13 October 2010

West Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust has become the first trust in London to implement RealTime Health’s discharge plan and decision support system.

The system aims to reduce patients’ length of stay by integrating clinical systems and providing staff with automatic targets, depending on the condition of the patient.

It provides a real-time dashboard that shows where a patient is in terms of their care pathway, where they are physically in the hospital, and whether there are any factors that could affect when they are discharged, such as interaction with social services or outbreaks of infection.

The graphical dashboard also shows ward layouts, individual patient information, and the number of days remaining to discharge – with any potential delays highlighted.

Dr Stella Barnass, acting medical director at the trust: “One of the key issues for any hospital is ensuring patients are discharged as soon as is safely possible.

Most patients would like to know in advance when they are going to be discharged, and do not want to stay any longer than they need to.

“We looked at a number of systems to help us improve the flow of patients through the hospital and chose RealTime because it is simple for staff to use but very powerful in what it offers.

"It will help hospital staff to focus more clearly on planning discharges and ensuring any obstacles or delays are avoided or minimised.”

The hospital, which signed the deal with RealTime in July, will pilot the system in the Medical Assessment Unit at the end of October, before rolling it out across adult medical and surgery wards over the next few months.

Jim Gabriel, chief executive officer of RealTime Health said: “This is much more than an operational system for managing patient flow-this is a platform for transformational improvement in patient flow.

“Having the RealTime system in place will make it much easier for trust staff to embrace and assume ownership of the new ways of working, and also to measure their progress through clinical dashboards if key performance indicators that RealTime provides.

The RealTime system has been developed in partnership with Cambridge University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

The company has already deployed the system at Scarborough and North East Yorkshire NHS Trust. And it recently signed a deal with North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust, which is expected to go-live before the end of the year.

Link: RealTime Health 

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