CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, located in the United Kingdom, has successfully gone live with the latest addition to its Allscripts electronic health record, despite the ongoing novel coronavirus outbreak.
The Trust decided to deploy the Sunrise EHR as a ‘clinical wrap’ around its existing patient administration system last year and went live with nursing documentation and risk assessments just five months later.
On March 17, 2020, the Trust added the e-observations functionality, which includes automatic calculation of NEWS2, the national early warning score designed to pick up patients at risk of deterioration. The implementation of NEWS2 is immediately helping the Trust manage patients during the COVID-19 outbreak. Gloucestershire Hospitals has also added icons to its patient tracking board to identify patients with COVID-19 and made results available through the system.
“At a time when we were in the midst of COVID-19 planning, I was unbelievably proud of our nursing staff for their impressive implementation of e-observations and commitment to making it work. This has been good for our patients and good for our clinical teams,” said Professor Steve Hams, the Trust’s Director of Quality and Chief Nurse.
“We knew that moving patient observations to Sunrise EHR would bring huge benefits in our two acute hospitals and had planned our launch for March. So when the COVID-19 pandemic hit the UK, we needed to make a quick decision about whether or not to go ahead. We held our nerve and put extra staff on our wards to make sure we got this right, at a challenging time for our hospitals,” said Mark Hutchinson, executive CDIO.
“Having e-observations in place has proved essential in managing our patients during the coronavirus pandemic. Our acute care response teams are able to manage caseloads, senior nursing staff can use the data to manage staffing deployment, and we’re able to track the numbers and locations of patients who are being supported by oxygen.”
The Allscripts U.K. team has moved fast to support Trusts like Gloucestershire Hospitals that want to proceed with go-lives that will help their staff and patients through the pandemic. It has created a Go-Live Virtual Office with a 24/7 virtual meeting room with voice and video capability, structured documents and screen sharing tools.
The office is connected to a floorwalking messaging app, so team members can be aware of issues as they are identified on wards and clinics, before they are logged into help-desk systems.
For the Gloucestershire Hospitals go-live, the virtual office was staffed with a wide range of team members based in different countries around the globe, so the Trust team could visit at any time.
“As NHS acute Trusts begin to deal with more and more people with COVID-19, the flexibility of Sunrise is proving to be a key tool for helping them to identify and manage these patients,” said Richard Strong, Allscripts Managing Director, EMEA. “It was a brave decision for Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to introduce new functionality to record patient observations and escalate the management of deteriorating patients amid the huge organizational change required to prepare for the pandemic. But it was absolutely the right decision, and one Allscripts was determined to support. We moved rapidly to new ways of working to fully support go-lives 24/7, without risking the health of our staff, NHS staff or patients by undertaking traditional support and floor-walking activities. We were already moving toward this way of working before the COVID-19 shutdown, but we accelerated our schedule to push through remote working in time for the Gloucestershire Hospitals go-live. We are now using these tools to support other NHS customers that want to go-ahead with functionality that will help them, their staff and patients at this exceptionally difficult time.”
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