Implementing an EPR for NAViGO Care
NAViGO provides a range of acute, community and specialist mental health services across North East Lincolnshire. The team had been using an electronic patient record (EPR) which was approaching the end of its life. NHS England was keen to move NAViGO onto a compliant system and provided funding, alongside the local CCG, to purchase a new EPR using SystmOne from TPP.
NAViGO approached Channel 3 Consulting for help implementing its new EPR. The team was keen to avoid losing the functionality and investment they had made in their reporting, but also recognised the need to improve their approach to recording and sharing information within and across teams. With a small in-house IT team and limited experience of working with TPP, NAViGO needed a solution which would provide the necessary skills and expertise to ensure successful implementation, with flexible resources that could be scaled as needed to meet demand.
In recognition of the scale, complexity and speed of the EPR implementation project, we recommended a Managed Service approach. This meant providing a dedicated project manager based on site, supported by an experienced team offering a variety of skills depending on the stage of the project.
Successful EPR implementation requires a thorough understanding of existing processes – both online and offline – in order to develop standardised systems which prevent the need for localised workarounds. We began by spending a week running workshops with clinical and administrative teams across NAViGO to agree the scope of the project, understand current processes and identify urgent areas to address.
We identified a number of paper-based workarounds and reporting inconsistencies which were resulting in duplication of effort and inconsistent and/or incomplete record keeping. Data sharing with GP practices was often reliant on phone calls and faxes, while internal referrals were often paper-based. Developing standardised processes that would plug the gaps previously filled by these workarounds was an essential step in ensuring the new EPR would deliver the desired improvements in accuracy, safety and efficiency. Our team ran a technical readiness evaluation and executive-level governance and readiness review to prepare the organisation for the task ahead. This ensured NAViGO was ready to embrace the associated transformation in business processes required to enable the new EPR to work effectively.
Senior level support from consulting partners throughout the project ensured the programme remained on track and NAViGO’s Executive Team were fully appraised of developments at every stage.
SystmOne is now in use across NAViGO’s services. Based on our technical reviews and team engagement, we configured the system to suit NAViGO’s needs, with standardised letters, assessments and forms now in use.
Introduction of tasks within SystmOne has reduced the need and use of email to transfer patient identifiable information between teams. Tasks are saved on the patient record and are auditable, making for a more robust management of workflow.
Introduction of a single shared patient record has eliminated a huge amount of data collection requirements and provides all clinicians with greatly increased visibility of care. Where GPs are also using SystmOne, the capability exists to share relevant aspects of a service user’s record with their GP, with appropriate governance in place.
Introduction of electronic referrals has eliminated the need for paper referrals and reduced the amount of information requested with a referral as clinicians have access to all of the service user’s data (where consent is provided). Furthermore, viewing discharge information and capturing discharge summary information online from the clinicians within the patient record has eliminated the need for admin teams to chase information retrospectively, improving efficiency when discharging service users.
The team is now looking at ways to expand use of the EPR in partnership with neighbouring healthcare providers.
"Working with Channel 3 made a significant difference to the programme’s success. The fixed price service model allowed me to deliver on budget while the addition of very experienced professionals from Channel 3 to augment a small internal team, ensured we delivered on time and significantly reduced the pressure on our organisation and its staff"
Brian Edmondson, Programme Manager, Clinical Systems Replacement at NAViGO
- Consistent configuration of SystmOne has enabled standardised processes to be implemented across teams
- Clinicians now enter information directly into the patient record, reducing admin and improving accuracy
- NAViGO clinicians have access to consistent, up-to-date patient records, with the ability to share data with GPs as appropriate
- The system provides a real time view of patients in beds with all information required to manage the service users on the ward
- Time spent on data collection, referral processing and discharge admin has been reduced, improving overall efficiency