New Digital ‘Care Record’ Launched Across Cheshire
Patients across Cheshire are some of the first in the country to benefit from the introduction of a new digital ‘Care Record’ which means their health and social care information is shared across multiple agencies – removing the need to repeat the same information to multiple agencies.
The ‘Cheshire Care Record’ is a partnership between GPs, hospitals, mental health trusts, community trusts, cancer services in hospitals as well as social care organisations, who are all dedicated to using the latest digital technology to help provide an even better service for patients.
The scheme has already been acknowledged as ‘best practice’ by healthcare experts in London after being shortlisted for the Health Service Journal Awards (HSJ) finals in their ‘Enhancing Care by Sharing Data and Information’ category.
Previously, patients have had to repeat their information to health and social care professionals where no patient history has been available on a digital basis across the region. But now a digital summary including previous test results, medication history, GP and hospital appointments can all be instantly viewed, enabling the clinician to have a clearer patient history and avoiding the need to repeat information.
The Cheshire Care Record provides authorised care professionals with faster, secure access to essential information when a patient requires care and support.
Guy Kilminster, Corporate Manager for Health Improvement, Adult Social Services and Health at Cheshire East Council, said: “The Cheshire Care Record is one of a few summary electronic shared records in the country that holds data from all the relevant agencies to give a holistic view of a patient’s status, which is up to date and quick and easy to view at a glance. All professional carers in health and social care are able to access the record – with the patient’s consent – and can now use it routinely to support care decision-making so that people will receive the right treatment more quickly.”
Dr Steven Moore, consultant in emergency medicine and chief clinical information officer at the Countess of Chester NHS Foundation Trust, said: “The fact that patients don’t have to repeat over and over again their health history numerous times makes all the difference to patient’s confidence in the health and social care system”.
“The main gain has been the access to medical records. The detail we have and the timeliness is very powerful. I have used it when patients have been unconscious or unable to clearly recall their medical history themselves due to pain, confusion or distress.
“It is invaluable in these types of incidents and can save vital time in deciding how to treat the patient, especially when it comes to verifying whether they are on the correct medication and making sure we avoid prescribing anything which could cause an adverse reaction with their existing medication and treatment plans.”
The Cheshire Care Record will help to improve the safety and quality of care across Cheshire and will ensure doctors and care professionals have an up to date record and ‘real time’ records on their patients.
A video demonstrating how the initiative works is now available for people to see and includes endorsements from community, hospital doctors and nurses, GPs and social care staff.
There is also a new website www.cheshirecarerecord.co.uk which has lots of information about the Cheshire Care Record for patients.