Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust has signed a £1.8m contract with CSC for its Medchart electronic prescribing and medicines administration system, with a planned roll-out from April next year.

The system is expected to assist with the development of the trust’s in-house, open source clinical portal, as well as the Leeds Care Record.

The record is a fully integrated, shared record across primary care, integrated care services and acute trusts in Leeds.

Marianne Taylor, the trust’s e-medicines lead pharmacist, told EHI the trust wanted a system that could provide e-prescribing across the three main areas of prescriptions, medicines administration, and pharmacy management.

Taylor said the trust was also looking for a solution that could integrate with the clinical portal that is being developed in-house and is “the root” of the Leeds Care Record.

“One of the key clinical benefits comes from making it available within the EPR, and within Leeds we happen to be looking at a wider electronic record than other areas might be.”

She said CSC was chosen from a shortlist of two suppliers as its functionality is closest to what the trust requires.

“With any medicines system, there’s no organisation that can find a perfect e-medicines solution because there are none that meet all of the requirements, but this broadly meets our functional requirements.”

Taylor said the trust and CSC also have a similar “roadmap” for implementation, with an initial focus on inpatients areas followed by outpatients.

The system will make prescribing and medicines administration more safe while also reducing the risk of medicine duplication and the complications caused by paper charts, she said.

“This will help solve problems…where medicines aren’t given on time because a chart has been lost or mislaid.”

Taylor said the trust is planning to start the first stage of the go-live in April next year, when the system is rolled out across general inpatient wards.

This will be followed by specialist inpatient wards, with the outpatient wards the last to receive the system – an implementation that she said may take up to three years in total.

Taylor said the trust is currently working with staff who will be the first to use the system, while also starting to plan how the system will be built.

A CSC spokesperson said: “We're delighted to be working with Leeds Teaching Hospital to implement an electronic medication management system.

“Studies show that CSC's medication management solution is associated with a significant reduction in medication errors – we believe it's a great example of technology improving care.”