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On June 9, 2016

St Vincent’s University Hospital wanted to create a more modern and efficient way of running its Emergency Department (ED), to support clinicians in safely managing patient pathways.

The hospital partnered with IMS MAXIMS to implement a functionally rich, interoperable and easy to use ED system that delivers real-time tracking of a patient journey through the department, an instant overview of patient status and a comprehensive suite of analytical reporting tools.

The challenge

As one of Ireland’s busiest EDs, St Vincent’s identified technology as a key enabler for transforming care delivery and wanted to upgrade its existing 14-year-old IMS MAXIMS ED system. The hospital had outgrown its functionality and needed a more powerful, modern and flexible version that would give consultants and their teams the capability to maximise the ED’s operation. This was particularly important as St Vincent’s was experiencing a significant rise in emergency admissions, from just over 33,500 in 2002 to around 50,000 for the last two years.

The solution

St Vincent’s upgraded to IMS MAXIMS latest ED system to gain more intuitive functionality, improved workflows and better integration with other applications and areas of its business.

Having worked with St Vincent’s for many years, IMS MAXIMS had become a trusted partner and had an in-depth understanding of the hospital’s needs. St Vincent’s worked closely with IMS MAXIMS to install and test new functionality of the ED system, which would go on to transform the way the department operated.

This involved migrating 16.5 million records from the previous system, creating new interfaces and a large amount of data mapping testing.

DermotCullinanQuoteThe new system provides:

Real-time, configurable patient tracking, including display of breach time indicators, KPIs, alerts, re-attendance, prioritisation of patients

Notification of new results and clinical notifications, previous history, incoming arrivals

Triage work-list and assessment, supporting multiple triage protocols, highlighting urgency levels, allocating nursing staff and providing decision support to define pathways

Clinician work-list and assessments, supporting the streamlining of patients for clinician intervention

Discharge summaries that include future care plans, support network, medication, outpatient booking and clinical outcome

The benefits

More efficient care

The new system ensures St Vincent’s can manage the demands on the department 24/7; the tool is rapidly becoming the eyes and ears of the department. Senior consultants remain in control wherever they are in the hospital, accessing the system on iPads to gain an overview of staff movements and using it to deliver care to patients. It includes treating those that are critically ill, within a rapid timeframe in order to meet realtime clinical requirements of the ED.

Improved reporting

St Vincent’s is now able to predict trends and analyse admissions by the hour meaning hospital staff can identify improvements and implement changes in hospital practice rapidly. Detailed reports are also generated much quicker resulting in handovers for patient assessments during the morning and evening becoming more efficient. Local and national requests to provide patient pathway information, such as Patient Experience Times reports for the Health Service Executive, are streamlined by linking the reporting functionality directly to the discharge process.

Reducing clinical risk

CaptureNurses and clinicians can now better manage patient journeys through the department using a number of Integrated Care Pathways (ICPs) in the new software including Sepsis and Falls. Clinicians can access a more complete patient record, securely, wherever and whenever it’s needed, including details on the urgency of each case, the length of wait and any risk factors. The move away from paper-based care has also helped eliminate issues created by missing patient notes, mislaid orders or results and unreadable handwriting, in turn improving patient safety.

Future plans

The ICT team is already receiving requests from the ED for the next phase, which will see St Vincent’s move the ED to a completely electronic patient record in the next 12-18 months.

  • Dermot Cullinan, ED, HSE, ims maxims, John Ryan, Open source, St Vincent’s University Hospital


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