An east London urgent care centre has reduced its referrals to A&E by accessing patients’ GP records held in EMIS Web.

The centre, attached to the A&E department at Newham University Hospital, implemented EMIS Web two months ago, allowing for two-way record sharing with local GPs.

It sees more than 70,000 patients a year where a team of GPs, emergency nurse practitioners and self-care assistants assess incoming patients, before referring back to their GP, to a minor injury unit within the centre, or to A&E for emergency care.

The local target is to refer no more than 26% of patients to A&E, but using Emis Web, it refers only 20%.

Associate medical director Kate Corlett said that having access to information held in the GP records allows staff to provide more informed, efficient care to walk-in patients.

“We can see the complete record, with point of care consent from the patient, and the GPs can see from our notes what care we have given their patients. The clinicians at the hospital love it,” she said.

“For a variety of reasons, some parts of the inner city population can find GP care difficult to access, which has meant increased emergency department visits.

“EMIS Web is a lovely clinical system. It’s easy to use and I think it is already a success for the UCC. We have taken significant amounts of work off the emergency department.”

Local GP Dr Bhupinder Kohli described the project as, “the most significant IT event for the last 10 years”.

“It is improving clinical care and patient safety and saving time. As well as supporting vulnerable patients who often do not know their full medical history, we can also educate them on how to best use their own GP practice,” he said.