East Lancashire NHS deploys early warning technology

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust works with Alcidion to provide vital tools to enhance patient safety

The deployment of Patientrack will help to identify patients at risk of deterioration

Thousands of NHS professionals across five hospitals in East Lancashire are to benefit from early warning technology that will help them detect and swiftly respond to deteriorating patients.

Alcidion’s Patientrack system will help staff intervene early to prevent harm when patients show signs of worsening conditions.

∫The mobile electronic observations technology will integrate with the trust’s Cerner Millennium system as part an electronic patient record deployment announced in February.

We are driving forward our ambitions to enhance patient care and improve working life for staff through digital technology, both locally and across the region

Integrating directly with devices used at the bedside to capture patients’ vital signs, Patientrack will use generated measures to automatically calculate a patient’s early warning score before alerting appropriate clinicians in the trust if, and when, they need to take action.

The new digital approach for bedside observations will end a reliance on paper-based processes, while acute care teams will gain better visibility of the trust’s sickest patients and be able to better co-ordinate responses across the five hospitals.

Patientrack is well established in the NHS, having already had a significant impact in several nearby trusts in the North West and in hospitals in other parts of the UK.

Clinical staff have used the system to cut cardiac arrests, tackle deadly illnesses including sepsis and acute kidney injury, to help reduce high-risk admissions to critical care, and to deliver other improvements to patient outcomes.

Smartpage – a smartphone and web-based system for hospital communication and task management from Alcidion – will be deployed in parallel with Patientrack.

This secure messaging system is helping NHS hospitals to move away from pagers and will integrate with the e-observations technology to push hard alerts to appropriate clinical teams so they can take urgent action.

Staff will also use Smartpage to support the hospital at night workload and to streamline patient handover between shifts.

Mark Johnson, chief information officer at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “We are driving forward our ambitions to enhance patient care and improve working life for staff through digital technology, both locally and in collaboration with our ICS colleagues across the region.

These are mobile technologies that our clinicians want to use, that can help to alleviate pressure and remove manual processes, and that can have a very immediate impact on patient outcomes and safety

“Patientrack, which has delivered impressive results for patient safety in dozens of other NHS hospitals, accompanied by Smartpage, will be an important part of that digital roadmap and the deployment of our local EPR.

“These are mobile technologies that our clinicians want to use, that can help to alleviate pressure and remove manual processes, and that can have a very immediate impact on patient outcomes and safety.”

The Alcidion technologies will be deployed across Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital, Burnley General Teaching Hospital, Clitheroe Community hospital, Accrington Victoria and Pendle Community Hospital.

Lynette Ousby, UK managing director for Alcidion, said: “Now, more than ever, clinicians need digital tools that make their lives easier, and that make the right thing to do the easiest thing to do.

“East Lancashire Hospitals is showing its desire to accelerate digital adoption on a significant scale very quickly and we are proud to be part of that.”

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