Pioneering digital project improving patient care wins award

Our digital project which gives front line ambulance crews secure and remote access to patients’ health records for the first time in the NHS has won an award.

O2 Blue Door awards Oct 2019
Ian Rutherford and Keith Emmerson from NHS Digital (middle) accepting the award at the O2 Blue Door awards on behalf of both organisations

We received the ‘Delivering business value through the connectivity value chain’ award at the first O2 Blue Door Awards this week for the Summary Care Records application (SCRa) pilot, which gives frontline medics direct access to clinical information on the go about a patient in their care.

The project, which launched at our Camden Ambulance Station with 76 of our crews in April, was developed by NHS Digital and is the first time NHS frontline staff have had secure and remote access to patients’ summary care records, helping them see their patients’ medical history, key personal information and any current illnesses. This access means our medics have the information they need to hand so they can deliver the best possible care for their patients, whether that’s treating them on the scene, taking them to hospital or referring them to care in their community.

Currently patient’s clinical information is accessed by staff in NHS Trusts by using a smart card in a computer. The SCRa access means that patients’ summary care records are available to our front line ambulance crews on their secure iPads which support them to do their job on the move.

The pilot was shown to make a difference to patients, as well as support our staff do their job, so a full roll out of this scheme is underway for all our 70 ambulance stations and 4,500 frontline staff across London.

Ross Fullerton, Chief Information Officer, London Ambulance Service, said: “Access to summary care records is, in my view, absolutely essential for ambulance services.

“It allows us to access critical information about our patients and deliver better care to them when they need it most.”

The award was presented to Ian Rutherford and Keith Emmerson from NHS Digital on behalf of both organisations at the Blue Door Awards ceremony, a new awards scheme for 2019 which recognises and celebrates some of the most effective ways organisations have used digital connectivity to drive change and improvements, on Thursday 10 October.