The Encompass programme from Health and Social Care Northern Ireland is being bolstered by the support of two digital health firms.

Global healthcare technology specialist, Tegria and digital health consultancy, Cloud21 will be providing strategic guidance, programme readiness and EPR implementation expertise to help Northern Ireland become the first UK country to implement a fully integrated electronic health and care record.

The Encompass programme is a 10-year national digital transformation initiative that aims to improve patient outcomes by better supporting health and care professionals. Its vision is for a digital health and care record for every citizen. The platform, which will be powered by Epic, it is built on will streamline services, patient journeys and ensure connected healthcare across primary, secondary, community and social care.

Dan West, chief digital information officer for Health and Social Care Northern Ireland, said: “Tegria and Cloud21 stood out because of their strong understanding of the challenges that we face with such a large-scale and radical digital transformation initiative.

“They quickly provided us with strategic leadership at a challenging time in the programme, while health and care systems across the world were dealing with the impact of the COVID pandemic. They brought people who understand large scale implementation and clinical transformation programmes to help us build a more sustainable and resilient service through digital.”

Earlier this year Tegria, one of the largest health and care providers in the US, invested in Cloud21 so that the latter can scale up its digital transformation services.

Justin Jozwik, managing director – international, Tegria, said: “Our experience in the US with the operational and cultural challenges of large-scale digital transformation across health and care systems nationally, combined with Cloud21’s hands-on experience in the UK, means together we are well-placed to support HSCNI’s Encompass programme and provide high quality strategic guidance, as well as the practical expertise that Tegria and Cloud21 are well-known for.”

Dr Tony Corkett, CEO, Cloud21 added: “The HSCNI is leading the way in advocating that every technology programme needs equal funding and support for people, processes and change management to be successful, and a national transformation programme of this scale is no exception. We look forward to working collaboratively with Tegria, to drive the Encompass agenda forward in delivering truly sustainable and transformative care.”

The health and care record will replace a number of legacy systems and paper-based processes in Northern Ireland and will cover acute physical services, mental health, community care and social services.