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Developing an electronic records system, SystmOne, to meet the needs of children's hospice services
  1. Carolyn Leese and
  2. Tracy Rennie
  1. East Anglia's Children's Hospices (EACH), UK


With the challenges set by the Department of Health National Strategic Programme, in 2009 Children's Hospice Services in the East of England started an ongoing major strategic development; the implementation of an electronic care records management system, SystmOne. The system is designed to improve management information to inform the development of services, improve sharing of information and enhance the quality and consistency of records.

The project has required a long term commitment by the organisation to ensure the system is developed effectively to meet the organisations' needs. During the last year, the main aim of the project has been focused on the development of care and support assessment tools and care plans.

An innovative approach to the development of the assessment tools and care plans has involved:

  • Collaborative working with external experts

  • Recruitment of a SystmOne Manager

  • Use of expert knowledge of key care and support professionals

  • Engagement of all staff

  • Involvement of Family Forums

  • Appointment of Champions.

The initial trials of the assessment tools and care plans proved instrumental in their successful implementation across the three hospice localities. However, there were some initial challenges to overcome including the:

  • Resistance to change resulting in the lack of recognition by some staff and managers of the need for electronic care records

  • Managing momentum and the lack of some staff and managers' commitment to dedicate time for using SystmOne.

The development of assessment tools and care plans will enable the creation of shared clinical care records with other healthcare providers, who are also users of SystmOne improving functioning and co-ordination between agencies. The sharing of records will enhance interagency working and communication, immediate availability of information, timely communications about changes to care and care needs.

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