The aim of the work was to enhance patient safety in the following ways:
Ability to remotely access a patient record enabling advice or queries to be addressed without finding a set of case notes
Reduced amount of telephone traffic between the multi–disciplinary team and hospice staff around episodes of care – enabling more timely and appropriate interventions to be offered to the children and their families
Enabling access to shared community records improving records on significant risks such as allergies and accuracy around what medication had been prescribed
Saving of clinical time that could be reinvested in providing more time with children and an increased capacity to care for more children and their families
Improve accuracy in record keeping.
The local General Practices and community services decided to move to one electronic patient system (EMIS web). The hospice was invited to piggy back on the move. Discussions were held with the providers of the system to make the system bespoke for use in the children’s hospice. Analysis took place of existing systems enabling them to be transferred to an electronic format. At all stages training, engagement and communication with staff was a high priority to successfully engage them in a significant change to practice.
Findings The nursing team have access to real time information about care episodes for the children both within the hospice and community. The accuracy of recording key information such as allergies and medication histories has improved significantly reducing the risk to patients. The amount of time lost in making phone calls and verifying information in order to deliver care has reduced.
Conclusion Time spent on documentation is more productive enabling more time to be spent with the children and families. The ability to share records with other agencies facilitates collaborative working between agencies.
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