University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust appears to have turned the corner with its troubled implementation of Lorenzo as part of the National Programme for IT in the NHS.
In an update on the single patient record project, delivered to the trust’s board last week, head of informatics Steve Fairclough, headed the ‘key messages’ slide of his presentation: “It works!”
He also said that staff feedback was “encouraging” although there is still work to be done, and further improvements in performance and usability are planned.
Morecambe Bay will now become the first trust to deploy pathology requesting and reporting in the latest version Lorenzo Regional Care.
This should happen next month, when one of two major upgrades planned for this year will also see the trust go live with a picture archiving and communications viewer.
In October, the trust is planning to go-live with an emergency care module and to take out (TTO) drugs prescribing. The update says fixes and testing are ongoing for both.
The update says the emergency care module has been tested with clinicians and operational staff and two final testing runs are scheduled to take place at both Furness General Hospital and the Royal Lancaster Infirmary next week. The parallel runs will include role-based demonstrations for all emergency department staff.
Morecambe Bay was the first acute trust to go live with Release 0 of Lorenzo Regional Care, in November 2008, and the first to start implementing Release 1.9, which includes PAS functionality, in June 2010.
The trust subsequently faced severe problems with the system, delivered by CSC as local service provider for the North, Midlands and East of England, and had to put a stabilisation plan in place to address issues with data input, clinic booking, and letters.
However, the trust told eHealth Insider in May that it had stabilised the system, and that it had only a small number of outstanding issues with the software. The latest update says fixes are now being dealt with on a four weekly rather than a six weekly cycle.
In addition to planning further extensions to the system, the trust is also starting to use Lorenzo to improve its business processes. The update says it is going to be used support a project to shorten the length of patient stays.
Meanwhile, a GP requesting system, TQuest, has been rolled out to local GP practices. It is already live in 15 of the 48 practices across Morecambe Bay, as well as 11 of the 13 practices in the North Lancaster primary care trust. Rollout to further GP practices, mostly in Furness and South lakes practices, will continue in September.
However, the trust has yet to officially sign-off on the deployment verification certification, which it says is a Department of Health issue.
The sign-off is needed for CSC to be paid. However, the company has been involved in protracted negotiations with the DH for a new deal for the NME, which has also been held up by a National Audit Office report into NPfIT and subsequent hearings and investigations.
The DH has told eHealth Insider it will not be signing off any Lorenzo deployments until the Cabinet Office has completed its Major Projects Review, and the Commons’ public accounts committee has published its report on the hearing it conducted into the NAO’s findings.
© 2011 EHealth Media.
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