More than 906,000 children’s public health records from the South Central region of England have been consolidated onto one single new child health system.

Led by South, Central and West Commissioning Support Unit (SCW), the project included migrating data from five separate IT solutions to create a central database of 3.2 million records – using System C’s CarePlus software.

The system combines 11 different child health information services and workflows to create a unified child health information service, covering children across a swathe of central Southern England including Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Bath, Swindon, Gloucestershire and Bristol.

Sue Trinder, Child Health Information Service (CHIS) director said having all the children in a single system is massively beneficial.

“It makes children really easy to track and means that we no longer have a major data entry task every time a child moves,” Trinder said. “Tracking children is important because it is essential children complete the full immunisation and screening programmes.”

Trinder explained that migrating years of data and processes from so many different child health systems and departments and assembling them into a single solution, had its challenges.

“It took a lot of effort. Inconsistencies and duplicates over so much data were inevitable and issues had to be sorted before the system could go live,” she said.

However, she said she was pleased to see it come into fruition.

“We are working with health and care professionals to ensure that they have access to comprehensive and accurate information about each child they care for,” Trinder said.

The new CarePlus system will allow staff to keep track of each child’s records, even if they move to another area within the South Central region.

Beverley Bryant, chief operating officer of System C, said the new unified service “will help close gaps and improve the protection and health of nearly one million children.”

The M4West project follows the launch of a capital-wide child health information service this summer.

System C’s CarePlus solution is used across 82 CCGs, and holds records on 6.2 million children.

Importance of child health records: (Source: Sue Trinder)

  • They support health visitors and school nurses in their jobs and play an important role in public health
  • They record routine immunisations, newborn screening events and developmental checks, as well as providing vital information to local safeguarding teams.
  • They provide a fail-safe to ensure that all children, including those not registered with a GP, have been offered and have access to vital public health services.