Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust (MTW) has signed a three-and-a-half year contract to deploy Patients Know Best’s (PKB) personal health record solution across the trust, serving its 1.9 million citizen population.

MTW becomes the third acute trust within the Kent and Medway Integrated Care System (ICS) to contract with PKB, following in the footsteps of Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust and Medway NHS Foundation Trust, who both have trust-wide contracts with PKB.

Using PKB’s personal health record, MTW will provide citizens with a single place to access their health information as well as use tools and resources to digitally engage patients and give them more control over their care.

In a phased implementation process, the trust aims to make administrative efficiencies, optimise outpatient pathways and deliver long-term clinical transformation.

MTW’s immediate objective is to support appointment management in line with the national patient engagement platform (PEP) programme initiatives.

All patients, professionals and services will be able to access PKB to request to book, reschedule and cancel appointments. Patients can choose to register through PKB’s web browser platform or use the NHS App which is already integrated with PKB and enabled across the ICS.

Sean Briggs, chief operating officer at MTW, said: “Our Outpatient departments see over half a million patients every year and ensuring everyone who comes through our doors receives the best possible experience is our key priority. The portal will play an important role in this and help patients manage areas of their care in an easy and convenient way.

“The portal will go live at the end of October and I would encourage patients to register on our website via the NHS app now so they are ready to take advantage of the full range of benefits when we launch.”

The trust will be sending digital letters from their hybrid mail provider, Xerox, for patients to access digitally within PKB. By doing so, patients can swiftly access vital appointment and clinical information, minimising delays with a reduced carbon footprint.

Additionally patients will gain access to tools and features such as tabular and graphed test results, questionnaires, bi-directional messaging, symptom tracking, dynamic care planning and measurement data from devices.

These tools help patients make informed decisions and support the safe introduction of national priorities such as Patient Initiative Follow Ups (PIFU).

Sally Rennison, chief commercial officer at PKB, said: “One of the aims behind ICS/ICB formation is to unify and improve working across healthcare organisations.

“The addition of Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells means patients across Kent will have a single portal across three trusts, ensuring that their record and data follows them wherever they are seen.

“This improves the patient experience as well as help providers co-ordinate efficient care delivery. The trust has big, long-term ambitions and we are excited to partner with them to ensure they realise the benefits in every phase’.

Back in May, PKB named Yorkshire-based tech consultancy firm 6B as its new technology partner, responsible for designing bespoke integrations with NHS EPRs to help improve efficiencies.