Leeds Care Record now has five major care settings viewing and contributing information across the region.

Mental health, adult social care and community have joined hospitals and GPs since January in both seeing a view only summary and contributing their data.

All 106 GP practices are now signed up in Leeds to the shared care record, which is powered and processed through The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust’s in-house PPM+ system.

Alastair Cartwright, director of informatics for three clinical commissioning groups in Leeds, told Digital Health News there are now 4,000 active users, a huge leap from April 2016 when there was 2,500 users.

Out of the 4,000 active users, roughly 1,900 are hospital users, 1000 general practice users, 600 community users, 250 mental health and 160 social care.

Cartwright said “while it’s certainly not everything” in what the record shows, but is “a limited but useful set of data”.

For instance, if it was a hospital or social care worker the GP information that could be seen would include a list of current problems, medications, allergies and tests requested.

He said that since it begun in 2015 the record has saved time amounting to more than £1 million a year.

Shared care or integrated digital records have been used successfully in pockets on the NHS, such as the Hampshire Health Records, for years.

Leeds Care Record has also been years in development with Digital Health News reporting in 2015 that GP, hospital and mental health information was available to view.

However, recently there is wider enthusiasm for shared regional records as the 44 sustainability and transformation plans gain momentum. On Tuesday, Doncaster announced its intention to deploy a shared care record this summer.

In Leeds, data is taken out of GP practices via the Medical Interoperability Gateway (MIG), and for the other sectors FIHR standards are used.

Cartwright said to increase the use of standard information exchange, the region was piloting GP Connect.

“The thing with patient exchange is if you can do it in a standard way, you don’t have to invent it everything you want to get information.”

“We’re also piloting national facility, called GP Connect. Which would also in the course of time give us this primary care information.”

In a 2017 prediction for Digital Health News, Beverley Bryant, digital transformation director at NHS Digital said the long awaited GP Connect pilot, that will allow records to be shared between GP Practices, would be trialled in Leeds and NHS Kernow.

This year, two hospices in Leeds have also been added to the care record, and it has been piloted for clinical handlers in the Yorkshire Ambulance 111 service.

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