Southern Health and Social Care Trust and Aura Healthcare have developed a clinical noting application they hope will reduce handover time.

The Northern Ireland trust collaborated with the company in the development of its Immix Note application and went live with the system in April.

The application, which has been designed by clinicians, gives staff across the trust a shared view of how many patients they have on each ward and lists of actions required.

Clinicians can also monitor early warning scores and charts with embedded alerts and escalation procedures.

It is used by around 90 clinicians at Daisy Hill Hospital and is being rolled out at Craigavon Hospital.

Dr John Harty, a consultant nephrologist at the trust, said the application gave medical staff access to a wealth of clinical information to quickly assess clinical needs and priorities.

They could assign tasks, and easily gain access to statistical information for audit and governance reporting, he said.

Harty added that the trust was already seeing a positive impact on care standards and patient safety.

The clinical noting solution is the first step in an agreement to jointly develop and introduce more clinical functions and applications across the trust.

Southern Health and Social Care’s assistant director of informatics Siobhan Hanna said the Immix Note roll-out had been successful because it was designed by clinicians, for clinicians.

"It meets their needs and has therefore organically grown without any forced implementation," she said.

"We have had strong clinical leadership in the roll-out, which has led to ownership and adoption of this application at a very early stage."

She added that Aura had listened to the trust’s needs, allowing it to rapidly develop the application to the satisfaction of the clinical teams.

Aura’s chief operating officer, Mark Hindle, said the application was deliberately simple and intuitive and, “second nature to a Facebook generation of junior doctors”.

“They grasp the concept within minutes and have mastered the application by the end of a shift, which is vital as 80% of the care in the NHS is provided by junior doctors,” he said.