Future Health Bulletin - Care connection
Todays issue of Future Health Bulletin (issue 35 Dec 04) carries an item (reproduced below with permission), describing an electronic record system for allied health professionals which has been implemented in Leicestershire and Rutland. It raises some important questions about the future use of "niche" systems which need to be made complient with the National Spine.
Therapist system shows positive results
A wireless administration and record system for 'allied health
professionals' - occupational therapists, physiotherapists,
podiatrists, dietitians, and speech and language therapists - is
delivering measurable benefits, according to its developers.
Leicestershire Health Informatics, which provides non-acute IT
to six primary care trusts in Leicestershire and Rutland, credits
the Tiara9 (http://www.ethitec.co.uk/tiara.html) system for
better follow-up care and a halving of some waiting-list times.
An offline system is now being tried by home visitors.
“The system holds information on whether you clipped
someone’s toenails, how many first and follow-up visits, how
many bunions – no more thumbing through your diary to figure
out what you did that month,” said Ian Wakeford head of
Leicestershire Health Informatics.
Implementation in Leicestershire began in 2001, before the
government started on its attempt to create a single solution as
part of the National Programme for IT (NPfIT).“The national
programme offers plenty for GPs, acute care and hospitals but
will have nothing to offer adult therapy until the back end of
phase two or beginning of phase three.
But what will happen to Tiara9 if the NPfIT delivers? “We are
not planning to take away a niche system that meets therapists’
day-to-day clinical needs just to put them on a generic system,”
Wakeford said. To be sure this option is available, he says, Tiara
will become a spine-compliant legacy system.
The Leicestershire Tiara9 implementation is the biggest, but the
systems has also been adopted by primary care trusts in
Derbyshire, Scotland, Northampton and Warwickshire.