Emergency staffing measures were required for more than two months in a Midlands’ mental health trust, impacting the deployment of its “full single electronic record”.

Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s third and final phase of its long-running Civica Paris single electronic record project, which involved establishing a “single electronic repository”, was deploying the system in inpatient wards this year.

Two sites, the Radbourne Unit and Hartington Unit, were placed in emergency planning measures by the trust due to general staffing pressures. This understaffing meant that people could not leave the ward for training.

A trust spokesperson said the trust’s “emergency measures processes are introduced at times when we feel we need to proactively introduce processes to ensure the trust’s services are staffed to appropriate levels”.

“This particularly applies to the trust’s acute inpatient wards.”

The contingency plans included redeployment of staff, use of bank workers and contacting retired employees to see if they wished to return. The measures lasted from 13 July to 27 September.

The spokesperson said that there was “minimal impact” on the wards.

A report on the project, published in the trust’s November board papers, details challenges with staff training and key employees leaving.

Issues included the difficulty in releasing staff for training, a project support officer leaving, and the potential withdrawal of the project’s clinical lead.

The third phase of the single care record project commenced January but the trust has been preparing for and slowly rolling out Paris since 2012.

 A trust spokesperson said there was not a fixed end to the programme.

Phase one and two of the record project was completed in both community and day hospital areas by the end of 2015.

As of November, only four of the trust’s nine sites were listed are live with the full single record project, according to the trust’s latest board papers.

Two were awaiting bank staff training and three were scheduled to all be fully live in January next year.

The board papers also said drawbacks from a consultant’s view point included: a lack of integration with other IT systems, a layout that was not user friendly, and difficulty accessing information.

Advantages listed include 24/7 access, one set of multidisciplinary case notes and electronic documents that cannot be lost or changed retrospectively.

The detailed presentation was in response to Caroline Maley, a senior independent director at the trust, observing that some areas within the trust were not fully compliant with the EPR. 

Digital Health Intelligence maintains a database of the administrative and clinical systems in use at trusts, and uses this to calculate a clinical digital maturity index score for them. Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust (log-in required) has a score of 53 (out of 97) and is ranked 44 (out of 56).

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* Derbyshire halfway through paris rollout
Derbyshire on track with paris rollout