First care providers connect to HSCN

Written by Sam Trendall on 13 December 2017 in News

Devon Doctors and Earl Mountbatten Hospice connect to new network

Devon Doctors and the Earl Mountbatten Hospice have become the first care providers to connect to the Health and Social Care Network.

The two organisations, both of which acquired connectivity services from IT firm Redcentric, migrated last month from the old N3 network to HSCN, which was built by NHS Digital and its commercial partners and went live earlier this year. Both projects went off without a hitch, with no disruption to service reported.

Devon Doctors is a social enterprise providing urgent GP services outside of regular practice hours to citizens across Devon. IT manager Arron Gardner claimed that the organisation sees the connection “as a catalyst for further innovation”.

“It gives Devon Doctors improved scope for initiatives that can make a real impact on clinical care and outcomes, and the patient experience,” he added. “For example, we are already looking at using tablet computers to deliver virtual clinics and triage within nursing homes, while we have a wound-management app that can now be accessed over HSCN.”

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The Earl Mounbatten Hospice is the only hospice on the Isle of Wight. It provides end-of-life care and bereavement support to the island’s residents. At any one time it supports the care of an average of about 650 people in their home, or in a care home.

Richard Eason, a systems developer for the hospice, said: “Those patients and their clinicians and nurses are set to benefit from our first HSCN enablement project. Our core clinical system is SystmOne, and those on home visits will be able to access it remotely, ensuring patient information can be checked and updated in real time, which in turn encourages a more robust, quality approach to both records and care.” 

Dermot Ryan, programme director, NHS Digital, added: “We now look forward to more organisations taking advantage of the innovation, cost savings and enhanced security capabilities of the network and to creating a thriving market for network services in health and social care.”


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Sam Trendall is editor of PublicTechnology

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