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One system, SystmOne – all Portsmouth practices now use same IT package
24 September 2018

All GP surgeries in Portsmouth now use the same IT system – paving the way for patients to get more joined-up, seamless care.

All 16 practices in the city are now using the SystmOne software, after North Harbour became the last practice to make the switch. This means they all share a standard clinical system for everything from storing patient records to booking appointments.

The community and mental health teams run by Solent NHS Trust also now use that same system, and adult social care staff are expected to follow suit next year.

The IT overhaul has direct implications for the quality of care that frontline teams can give to their patients, and should also reduce the frustrations of patients who have regularly had to explain their whole medical history every time they see a new doctor or nurse.

In the past, city residents using the out-of-hours service would be seen or spoken to by a clinician who could not see their notes. Now they can immediately access the patient’s full record, no matter which practice they are registered with – that means better care, and a lower chance of the patient being referred back to their own GP surgery.

GPs can now easily access records kept by other healthcare professionals, such as community nurses, to see – for example – whether their patients are waiting for test results, or have other appointments pending. In turn, community-based teams can also easily view a wider range of information about their patients. In the past, frontline staff could not easily access patient data which was held by other parts of the NHS.

CCG Clinical Leader Dr Linda Collie said: “NHS IT systems may seem like a really dry subject, but actually there have been some truly significant changes recently, and those changes will mean better experiences for patients.

“Getting all of our practices onto the same patient record system is a huge step forward, and will really open the door so that we can press ahead with joining up services for patients. We know that people hate having to tell their story over and over again, and get rightly irritated if the care they get from the NHS is fragmented and inefficient.

“Joining up our IT systems is a real step forward to giving people better care, and ending some of the needless hassle that has all too often been the norm. Health staff will be able to make decisions about someone’s care knowing that they are seeing the whole picture of that person’s health, and can rely on using real-time, accurate, and comprehensive information.

“Ultimately, we are moving towards a truly integrated health and care record for city residents, and getting all practices signed up is a real milestone on the journey towards that goal.”

The process of moving all city practices onto the same IT system has taken several years. Portsmouth CCG has provided support to each practice to make the change, and to maximise the benefits available for their patients.

 

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