NHS trust deploys new game-changing app



Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust has deployed DXC Technology’s cloud-based Clinical Aide mobile application.

The platform is designed to secure access to electronic patient medical records and increases patient and hospital staff safety by limiting unneeded contact in higher-risk areas such as COVID-19 wards and intensive care units.

By using a cloud-based mobile app that sits on top of the Trust’s electronic patient record (EPR) system, clinical teams can now securely view and use important patient information from the Lorenzo EPR, part of the DXC Care Suite, from anywhere via a tablet or other mobile device.

Mobile access to a patient’s allergies, problems, observations, medication, results and other documented information reduces the need for staff to enter higher-risk hospital areas to review and update medical records directly on workstations. This enhancement also removes the need to transfer paper-based detailed patient information in or out of the hospital’s COVID-19 wards.

Dr Alastair Pickering, chief clinical information officer at Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, which manages Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital, said, “The way our clinical workforce is currently deployed requires greater flexibility to access important information. Going to a static device and logging in is now often not practical, and Clinical Aide is allowing clinicians to access results and other crucial information on-the-go, in a way that is much more supportive of current ways of working.”

He added, “There is a significant safety gain in making this information mobile, as some staff are not now required to go into high-risk environments like intensive care units or other wards with COVID patients. Pharmacists and the dietetics team, for example, are now able to review and act on referrals that have come through to their mobile device from any location, meaning they are less likely to expose themselves to infection or need to use the Trust’s personal protective equipment.”

DXC’s Clinical Aide has been rapidly deployed across six hospital wards with COVID-19 patients, with minimal training required. The cloud-based mobile app is used by a diverse range of healthcare professionals including nurses, dieticians and pharmacists, who can also view patient assessments, ongoing plans and patients’ personal health wishes.

The app provides a flexible approach to accessing the Trust’s locally designed forms to supplement COVID-19 guidance for hospital bereavement teams. Trust clinicians can add detailed patient notes from Clinical Aide into the EPR, for nurses and bereavement team members to access on their mobile device when talking to patients and relatives.

Neil Proudlove, head of care records at Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, said that new digital approaches developed in response to coronavirus will soon be expanded. “Responding to COVID-19 is just the beginning,” he said. “The introduction of technology to overcome some of the barriers presented by coronavirus can be applied to the organisation post-COVID.”

He added: “Clinical Aide access has been deployed to hundreds of staff at pace in just a few weeks and has been popular with clinicians, who have access to results as soon as they become available and who don’t need to go back to base to view important information in the EPR. We plan to deliver Clinical Aide to more of our 8,900 staff, and to make it even more comprehensive as a tool. One of the main aims would be to use the mobile technology to support ward rounds and medical handover processes.” Combined with the integrated use of other mobile apps, he said, the Trust plans to progress its digital maturity through these flexible ways of working.

Colin Henderson, director of healthcare and life sciences for the UK, Ireland, Israel, Middle East and Africa (UKIIMEA) at DXC Technology, said, “This is a good example of quickly deploying a helpful cloud-based utility, giving the users a seamless, secure way of seeing vital information in a mobile form. Speed and ease of deployment was an important factor given the climate we were in, and it’s great to receive such positive feedback from the front line.”

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