The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust has successfully created a single patient administration system for its community and acute staff.

In 2011, the trust took over community services from Wolverhampton City Primary Care Trust as part of a restructure of Wolverhampton CCG.

As part of that deal, the trust inherited an iPM patient administration system, the contract for which ended in July this year, while the hospital was using a separate Silverlink PAS.

In a race against the end of iPM contract, Wolverhampton matched and merged 109,000 master patient index records, transferred 140,000 referrals and other clinical data and created 20,000 records and 5000 new registrations for patients not already on the acute PAS.

The new system went live in June, after a migration that had been running since January.

Wolverhampton worked with healthcare data specialist, Stalis, using the CareXML platform to merge the two PAS, as well as to view its archives.

Nick Bruce, associate director of ICT at Wolverhampton, explained the six-month turn-around: “Effectively with the close down of the national systems and the expiry of the national contracts, the trust was faced with the position that it had two patient administration systems.”

“The iPM PAS system was funded under the national contract and to continue with that system would just be too much of a cost challenge.”

“We had this challenge in around six months to implement effectively a massive data migration from the community PAS system into our acute PAS system, and then close that system down.”

Andrew Meiner, managing director at Stalis, said Wolverhampton had “wanted to merge where they had patient X on both systems”.

“They wanted to be able to identify and merge those patient records in an automated way.”

Wolverhampton is one of the largest acute and community providers in the West Midlands.

Manx Baker, an ICT programme manager at the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, said: “The greatest pressure was simply the time constraints that we had because we had to do this from standing still to completion in six months”.

“The time pressure lead to a lot of decisions being made quickly, and some of those decisions weren’t necessarily the right ones.”

Any interfacing to and from the PAS system is through HL7, and all the data and activity that is structured within the PAS system is to HSCIC standards.

Bruce said “given the time frame, the migration has gone very well”.

“I think we’re in a very good position.”

Stalis has worked on data migration services to other NHS trusts such as Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust in February 2012.