East Midlands Ambulance Service, which covers the Lincolnshire area, is to invest more than £3 million to modernise its patient records system over the next two years.
The system, including the introduction of new tablets for recording and transferring data and information, will be used by ambulance crews across the region, with benefits including:
- Access to online information about medical and traumatic conditions and treatment
- Ability to provide prompt transfer of patient care to other health organisations with ability to electronically send details about the patient to the emergency department including appropriate photographs from the scene of the incident
- Increase integration by accessing details about alternative healthcare providers, allowing them to signpost patients and carers to the most appropriate local treatment or care facility
- Improve the legibility of patient specific information
- Readily available data for research and audit teams – waiting for paper report forms to be received can cause delay
- Enhancing the security of patient records – EMAS said electronic storage of records is a more robust, secure way to store patient records compared to paper copies.
Steve Bowyer, EMAS Head of Information, Management and Technology, said: “This significant investment will help us to improve the care and treatment received by patients across the East Midlands.
“The new software has a more modern appearance and additional functionality which includes integration with hospital booking-in systems, incorporation with our medical equipment used to save lives (eg defibrillators used to treat people in cardiac arrest), and useful tools such as a NHS service telephone number search and medical spell checker.
“We involved a staff group in the development of our business case for this project and have chosen to replace the current Toughbook laptops with a new tablet which has been chosen based on feedback relating to its weight, handling, infection prevention and control compliance and screen ease of use. The devices will also have 4G connectivity to improve data transfer.”
The new system will begin to be rolled out across of all of EMAS from April 2017, with the project completing in September.
The system and software will be provided by two organisations, Medusa and Getac UK Ltd.