Fifty trusts gathered at Basildon and Thurrock University Hospitals Foundation Trust’s electronic medical record summit this week to hear about how the trust procured and implemented a bespoke EMR.
The system went live in October last year and provides clinicians with access to a patient’s historic records and displays real-time information from the patient administration system and a number of others including pathology and radiology.
Around 200,000 case notes out of 450,000 have now been scanned into the system.
The team from Basildon and Thurrock told an audience in London on Tuesday about the implementation, challenges they had faced in the process and what they had learnt from the experience.
Mark Margrath, director of strategy and development and executive lead for the EMR project, said he hoped the trusts would come away with a few pointers.
“We’ve learnt so much from this and we feel it would be valuable for the NHS to see what we’ve learnt.
“We had a lot of trusts contacting us saying they wanted to come visit us and see the system. We felt it would be better to have them come along to a day where we can show what we’ve learnt instead.”
The original EMR tender was won by a supplier consortium and was built in conjuntion with the trust and heavily influenced by clinicians. The system is now owned by Fortrus.
Many of the trusts who attended were looking to procure an EMR system and some are already out to tender.
Attendees included; Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, St Georges Healthcare NHS Trust and University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation trust.
“We know that a lot of them are thinking about putting out business cases for EMR’s and we hope they can learn from us,” said Margrath.
Maggie Doughty, health records manager at St George’s Healthcare Trust, which is currently close to the end of an EMR procurement, said the Fortrus system was very impressive and that there were definitely useful lessons to be learnt from the event.
“It’s interesting to see and learn from other trusts. We can learn from what they’ve done and bring that back to our own work,” she added.
Basildon has built its own scanning operation and has trained its staff to index documents to tease out the relevant information.
To relieve some of the burden of the scanning bureau, Margrath said the trust is planning to introduce e-forms as a part of the system.
“For the clinicians who want to, we want to allow them to capture information electronically, particularly in history sheets. We also want to trigger work flow on the back of these e-forms.
“We’re also putting in a referral e-form and hope to launch it in the New Year,” he said.