Supported by System C

Judges

  • Richard Jeavons, NHS Connecting for Health director of service implementation, North East cluster
  • Dr David Flory, chief executive, NHS North East
  • Dr Ian Denley, chief executive, System C

Winner South Staffordshire Healthcare Foundation Trust

The judges chose Values Exchange as the winner for its distinguished and innovative use of IT to develop an electronic forum for canvassing views examining how the trust delivers healthcare

Originally launched as a pilot, the programme was used to provide evidence about health professionals' feelings and reasoning. The system software uses interactive screens and allows staff to express their views on ethical, moral and social care issues relating to cases brought forward for consideration. These views can be used to generate quantitative and qualitative values-trends reports about important service issues.

Nearly 30 cases have been considered. In one instance the deliberation was presented by the multidisciplinary care team to a consultant who had declined surgery to a severely learning disabled patient because of concerns about post-operative care. The consultant reconsidered, the operation went ahead without problems and the quality of the patient's life is much improved.

The success of the ethical information exchange system has exceeded expectation. Following the pilot scheme - an NHS/private sector partnership - the project has been rolled out to all staff with a view to establishing it as good practice by 2008. Feedback has informed a number of changes to the software and service users and support staff are now increasingly involved. Staff training and engagement in the process has energised the trust and changed the way people think about themselves. Values Exchange allows for real inclusion as everyone's voice can be heard and dialogues about difficult themes are democratised. The ethics of healthcare has become a live issue.

South Staffordshire has bought in to the system and its principles at the highest level. It is embedded in what they do and is being used to inform how they run the trust.

Values Exchange, contact amanda.godfrey@ssh-tr.nhs.uk

Highly commended Kent and Medway SHA

The picture archiving and communications system (PACS) and radiology information system (RIS) programme deployed county-wide systems using products provided through national IT programme contracts to five acute trusts

The programme was the first to deploy PACS and RIS in line with the national deployment model, follow the principles of the national IT programme and implement the new local service provider-hosted solution model from a data centre.

A consistent approach to coding for areas such as user names and ward codes across the SHA avoids problems associated with code clashing.

Among the benefits identified were system familiarity and reduced training needs for staff moving across the patch, development of best practice in a well-defined system and a substantial reduction in appointment cancellations and repeat examinations.

The programme cost around£43m. Cash and non-cash releasing benefits of around£45m were identified, as were avoided costs of£28m.

PACS and RIS deployment, alison.pemberton@kentmedway.nhs.uk

Highly commended Salford PCT

Salford's project delivers a modernised service designed around patients with diabetes and other long-term conditions rather than the patients' needs being forced to fit around the service

The LTCII system was started to provide health professionals with secure access to patient information and to give the patient their own paper record. Web-based integrated healthcare systems improve patient care and promote a more efficient service.

Key objectives included: providing patients and professionals with this integrated system, better-informed decision making and care pathway monitoring, supporting the implementation of national service frameworks and the NHS plan and accurate management reporting. The LTCII system picks up on gaps in clinical data, prevents duplication and decreases errors in data recording.

Patient information can be made available at any time, even when the treatment is delivered by a service that does not hold clinical records.

Long-term care information integration, contact emma.parkes@salford-pct.nhs.uk

Finalist The Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals Trust

The TIA project sought to improve the service for patients suffering a transient ischaemic attack ahead of best practice and national guidelines

The project's aim was to provide an effective and timely patient-centred pathway by developing a trust-wide electronic stroke register. The TIA team can now track and audit inpatients while conducting reviews of ongoing clinics and enabling the immediate production of GP letters. The audit capacity facilitates educational initiatives. The system has significantly reduced referral times to start of treatment by GP.

E-solutions to problems in the TIA service, contact selina.smith@rwh-tr.nhs.uk

FinalistHammersmith Hospitals Trust

Several policy documents advocate the use of e-technology to improve the safety and efficiency of medication prescribing, dispensing and administration

Trials of such technologies, many of which are designed for the US, are needed in the UK to inform their development for the NHS. The project sought to gain experience with the use of e-technologies in the UK to inform the choice of longer-term strategies.

The trust worked in partnership with medicines-related e-technology suppliers to evaluate interventions and predicted benefits. Prescribing and administration errors were reduced as were dispensing errors involving wrong content.

Medicines management, contact meskinner@hhnt.nhs.trust