North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust has put back the planned implementation of InterSystems’ TrakCare until September this year.

The trust had intended to implement the electronic patient record this month to replace its 27-year-old patient administration system iExpress from iSoft (now CSC), using £7 million from the ‘Safer Hospitals, Safer Wards: Technology Fund’.

However, EPR programme manager Gillian Colquhoun said in a comment to Digital Health News that short delays to the project had put back the go-live date.

“The trust experienced a two week delay in the electronic patient record project over the Christmas period. Because of this, it was decided to push the go-live date back until after the summer period, with the next available date being in September.

“The delay has had no operational or financial consequence and we fully expect that the project will catch up in later phases.”

North Tees and Hartlepool picked InterSystems as its preferred supplier in February 2014, making it the company’s first major EPR site in England.

InterSystems’ main focus has traditionally been Scotland, where it covers 70% of the population, although it is also in use at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases NHS Foundation Trust in Bath.

Several other large English trusts have since gone with the TrakCare system, including Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust and Yeovil District Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, which made their decision after a collaborative procurement process.

The implementation of TrakCare at North Tees and Hartlepool will take place as part of a two-phase process.

Phase one will begin in September, when the trust will begin to install TrakCare as the PAS, as well as systems for maternity, emergency department and theatre management.

The trust says that it has progressed with the “mapping of trust clinics and associated testing progressing during the year” as part of this phase.

Phase two is planned for an unspecified later date and will see North Tees and Hartlepool add advanced clinical functionality including electronic prescribing, medicine administration and clinical decision support.

The board papers also mention other IT activities the trust is involved in, including an investment in mobile devices such as laptops and ‘toughbooks’ for staff working in the community setting.