Since introducing System C’s CareFlow Vitals electronic observations software across the Trust’s two acute hospitals, East Sussex Healthcare Trust (ESHT) has seen marked improvements in patient safety – notably with reduced cardiac arrest rates and improving outcomes for patients. Other benefits include smarter, more pro-active working and earlier interventions. The software has also helped the Trust develop a culture of improvement, using real-time data to drive change.

The Trust’s implementation and use of CareFlow Vitals (formerly Vitalpac) by its Outreach Team is praised by the CQC as an area of excellence.

ESHT’s nursing teams are using the software on iPods at the bedside and iPads at ward and Trust level. It provides:

  • Real-time, bedside capture of patient assessments & monitoring
  • Immediate calculation of National Early Warning Score (NEWS)
  • Guidance on next steps – when to repeat observations, when to escalate care
  • A view of data anywhere via hospital intranet, allowing for proactive intervention by specialists and outreach teams

The Trust says the solution’s ease of use and its interoperability have been key to user acceptance and its popularity with nursing staff. The software has been integrated with ESHT’s own in-house portal, so staff can either enter via the portal using a patient ID and view charts at the patient level, or they can go directly through the front face of the Vitals software and get a different, Trust-wide view.

Dr Kate Murray, critical care consultant and chair of urgent care board, East Sussex Healthcare Trust says “Vitals has enabled us to embed mobile working and we now feel well-placed to springboard forward in terms of our use of clinical IT.”

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