South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust is implementing an integration engine and clinical portal to allow healthcare professionals to see patient information from different clinical systems in one place.

The trust picked ReStart Consulting’s Viper360 as the platform to deliver its integrated digital care record to bring together data from its core IT systems RiO and SystmOne, as well as other legacy systems.

The first phase of the project will see ReStart develop a trust integration engine to establish a platform for real-time clinical interoperability at the trust, which provides mental health and community services to a population of more than one million.

Following this, South West Yorkshire Partnership and ReStart plan to integrate the trust’s two core clinical systems; Servelec’s RiO, which is used in mental health and inpatients; and TPP’s SystmOne, which is used in its community services.

This will enable clinicians to share information such as referrals, clinical alerts, notifications, admissions and discharges data between the two areas.

Once this integration is in place, the trust will create a single view of the patient in Viper360, using information from RiO and SystmOne as well as data still held in legacy systems McKesson, TotalCare Community and iPM.

Paul Foster, head of IT services and systems development at the trust, told Digital Health News he expects clinicians to be able to use the portal to view data from the initial integration of SystmOne and RiO by the end of this financial year.

He said that integrating the systems can reduce both clinical risk and duplication of clinicians’ effort. Having information more widely available can also improve patient experience by not having a need for them to repeat information at different stages of care.

The use of multiple systems at the trust is due to its mixed history. According to Foster, before the Transforming Community Services programme in 2010-11, South West Yorkshire was purely a mental health trust that had implemented RiO in 2006 to consolidate around nine different clinical systems.

After 2010, the trust took on more community responsibilities, such as district nursing, where SystmOne was the system of choice. It also took on additional mental health services in a neighbouring area that used CSC’s iPM, although this has now been decommissioned and data transferred to RiO.

Foster said the decision to use an integration engine and portal was the right one for the trust as its clinical systems are on different contracts with different timelines, and that no current single system can effectively serve both mental health and community health at the trust.

“They have slightly different needs and I don’t think there is a one size fits all solution out there that robustly meets that.”

He said that he sees the portal as a “read-only feed” that can provide holistic care information and will be agnostic to the clinical systems that provide the data it shows.

The trust’s move towards integration kicked off around two years ago, when the government launched the Safer Hospitals, Safer Wards Technology Fund and the trust won funding for two projects related to integrated digital care records.

The trust then made a bid to the Integrated Digital Care Fund to invest in the portal project, but this was unsuccessful after the fund was cut significantly. However, Foster said the trust had already committed to the project and so it was funded locally.

The decision to go with ReStart and Viper360 was due in part to the company’s previous experience in integrating RiO and SystmOne. The platform also puts South West Yorkshire Partnership in a better place to support integration with external organisations, said Foster

“The later phases of integration development are with our partner systems in both the acute sector and local authority.”

Other plans for the trust and ReStart include implementing a patient portal so that service-users can view their own health record securely.