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NHS community healthcare provider CSH Surrey has gone live with a platform that holds health information for 440,000 children that live in the region as part of a consolidation exercise.
The implementation of the CarePlus system from System C has involved combining legacy systems of six clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in addition to the service’s three NHS providers – First Community Health and Care, Surrey and Borders NHS Partnership Trust, and CSH Surrey itself.
More than 500 staff across the healthcare providers will be using the system, which aims to provide easy access to information to support pre-school and school healthcare programmes such as birth details, immunisations and screening records for all of Surrey’s children.
According to System C, the “complex” programme of work was delivered on time and under a three-month timescale.
“I’m very pleased with the roll-out of a single child health record for the area,” said Keith Woollard, director of digital services at CSH Surrey.
“We’ve managed to achieve a very smooth transition in a short timescale and we’re already seeing the benefits of providing care professionals with a single health record.”
The new system also included links to the ground-breaking National Event Management Service (NEMS) launched by NHS England and NHS Digital last year. CarePlus is one of three child health systems nationwide that link to NEMS.
Through that interface, the system shares event alerts with care professionals on change of address, change of GP practice, birth and death notifications, as well as screening events for neonatal bloodspots, hearing and newborn infant physical examination.
The platform also uses application programming interfaces (APIs) to interact with the Personal Demographic Service (PDS) and with Health Intelligence for GP immunisations.
Replacing legacy systems and eliminating paper records is a challenge in the NHS, but some organisations across the UK are making progress on that front.
An example is Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust, which is focusing on digitising records and ensuring wider access to real-time information.
“Every computer I’ve been buying recently has a touchscreen,” says CIO Hugo Mathias about the transformation he is leading, where interoperability and integration are key pillars.
“The doctors will also be able to add digital dictation. We use best-of-breed software that gives us the best value and we’re using integration tools to bring all that together. We’re also adding single sign-on to these systems, so that it’s easy for the consultant to navigate our services.”