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EHI EHealth Insider Highlights

Emis and TPP sign data sharing pact
Barts in special measures
From Russia with love

Welcome [*data('2.first_name')|html*] Issue No 675, 20 March 2015 twitter contact



The sense of shock has been palpable. As one commenter on the EHI News website put it: what is going to happen next? Souring milk, plagues of locusts, two headed nay three headed lambs… In fact, the news that TPP and Emis have entered into a data sharing agreement should not have been so much of a surprise.

The two companies have been fierce rivals in GP computing, but that is getting to be a mature market now – and one in which suppliers are facing a number of pressures to be more open to exchanging data and working with other firms. At the same time, both are making moves into A&E, community services and mental health, where the need for integrated working makes effective data sharing a compelling proposition.

Actually no, it was still a shock. Also a shock was Barts Health NHS Trust going into special measures. It has been clear for some time that the trust faces enormous financial challenges, regulatory pressures, and workforce issues. But even so, this is the biggest and one of the best known trusts in the country. The move was taken in response to a CQC inspection report on Whipps Cross Hospital; where, among other problems, the inspectors found significant issues with the implementation of Cerner Millennium.

To finish off the shock theme, NHS England director of patients and information Tim Kelsey set Twitter ablaze with his apparent promise that the NHS was going to roll out free wi-fi across the estate. Clarification; it’s just something he would like to see. A lot.



Emis and TPP sign data sharing pact

Emis and TPP have signed a data sharing agreement to enable direct interoperability between their clinical systems, with pilot sites set to trial information sharing within three months.

Barts in special measures

Barts Health NHS Trust has been placed in special measures as it deals with a major deficit, problems meeting national waiting time standards and a damning Care Quality Commission report into one of its hospitals.

Kelsey pushes for free NHS wi-fi

The NHS should install free wireless internet across its entire estate to act “as an instrument of social transformation”, NHS England’s Tim Kelsey says.

Another trust outlines CP-IS plans

Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust is preparing to be part of the first wave of trusts in the nationwide Child Protection Information Sharing project.

Data advisory group to disband

The independent advisory group set up to review requests for GP patient data is being disbanded in favour of two organisations that separate data collection and data dissemination.

Lords to examine NHS identity bill

A bill proposing to mandate the use of a common patient identifier across the health and social care system will be discussed in the House of Lords tomorrow.

Welsh ambulance crews to use digi pens

The Welsh Ambulance Service Trust has agreed a deal with Anoto for 1700 digital pens to be given to its ambulance crews across Wales.



So, you’re running a state of the art hospital and facing the kind of winter pressures that have faced so many NHS institutions. You need to open up more beds, and luckily have some ward procedure rooms that are going to pass muster. Unfortunately, they aren’t connected to the state of the art calling system.

What to do? Well, if you’re Southmead Hospital in Bristol, you pop out and buy 23 handbells; and ask patients to give them a good shake if they want anything. Sadly, this has not gone down entirely well, with the Guardian reporting local paper complaints that the bells were “like something out of Downton Abbey” and too heavy for elderly patients to use. Still top marks for lateral thinking, and as one commenter said: “If they all had different tones, they could play tunes to pass the time.”




A sector to Watch

Policy makers have worked out that integrated care will need integrated IT. But Ewan Davis doubts they understand how to achieve that – and suggests they should look to Moscow for ideas.

Power to the people: takes another bite of Apple

Many digital column inches were expanded on the launch of the Apple Watch last week. But Paul Hodgkin argues the development to watch is ResearchKit.


Featured comment


“It's long overdue, but this is the greatest thing to happen to general practice and community care since the invention of coffee.”

By: TheInsider
Story: Emis and TPP sign data sharing pact


Quote of the week


“The idea that we have got this vast estate and we are not using it itself as an instrument of social transformation seems to be a bit of a lost opportunity, when even the London Underground is capable of installing wi-fi at no marginal cost to it because, of course, industry wants to get involved.”

Tim Kelsey, NHS England’s director of patients and information, says the NHS should install free wireless internet access across its estate. But that’s just a personal view and not a policy.


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