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On October 7, 2015

Dublin-based IMS MAXIMS goes live with first open source electronic record at UK hospital.

IMS MAXIMS, an Irish-founded healthcare software developer, has delivered the UK’s first live open source electronic patient record in a landmark move expected to help staff deliver better patient care through improved access to information.

Working closely with staff at Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust, the open source electronic patient record (EPR) system was successfully rolled out in A&E, theatres, outpatients and the hospital’s 30 wards.

The pioneering software firm, which has offices in Dublin, has long championed for greater innovation, more affordable and proven solutions in the NHS and software that is tailored to each healthcare organisations’ needs.

Up until now NHS trusts have depended on proprietary software in order to record and manage patient information. In response to this, IMS MAXIMS released the code for its open source technology to the NHS just over a year ago.

Staff at Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust have now made a significant move away from this approach and are using software called openMAXIMS to create accurate, accessible and integrated care records that will allow staff to support safer and more efficient care for patients attending the 600-bed Musgrove Park Hospital.

Open source technology has also been praised for encouraging doctors and nurses to become engaged in the deployment of major IT systems so that IT teams and developers can design and implement software that meets the real clinical needs of the NHS organisations using it.

Dr Chris Swinburn, clinical lead for the project at the trust said: “Our clinicians have been involved right from the start, from influencing the procurement of the software right through to the design of the system to suit our clinical needs and processes.”

“We wanted to work with IMS MAXIMS because its system has been created over a long time within an NHS environment and developed alongside clinicians.

“Following the go-live, we believe we have developed a robust EPR system that can be replicated in other hospitals. This can deliver wide reaching benefits across the NHS.”

Malcolm Senior, director of IT at the trust said: “With the NHS looking to reduce the projected £30bn a year funding gap by 2020/21[1], there is now, more than ever, a clear requirement to make the most of precious hospital resources.

Key functionality includes the patient administration system that will record the demographic details, scheduling and referral to treatment (RTT) information of the trust’s 500,000 patient visits each year.

In addition theatre and anaesthetic departments will be able to update records digitally, much faster than previous paper-based processes.

The new technology has provided an opportunity to make processes for admission, transfer and discharge, of patients more efficient and coordinated with the help of real-time bed management and discharge planning.

A reducing dependency on paper notes also means the trust is working towards the national ambition within NHS England’s Five Year Forward View[2] to ensure electronic health records are fully interoperable, supporting health secretary Jeremy Hunt’s challenge for the NHS to be paperless by 2018[3].

Richard Jefferson, head of programme commissioning at NHS England said: “We are delighted to see the first deployment of openMAXIMS going live in an NHS hospital. This represents a landmark moment in the use of open software in the NHS and validates the idea that open source can play a significant role alongside proprietary offerings.”

The go live of openMAXIMS was preceded by an extensive training programme for 3,500 hospital staff including clinicians and administrative users. In addition a command centre with experts from IMS MAXIMS and the trust, as well a senior managers, were  on hand 24/7 during the go live period.

Shane Tickell, CEO of IMS MAXIMS, said: “This is a significant step for the next generation of clinical software. Technology disruption is not a phrase closely associated with healthcare but this proves there is a place for proven, safe, flexible software to add considerable clinical and administrative benefit to hospitals and their neighbouring care organisations.”

Notes to editors:

Technical information about the project

The core functionality introduced in phase one of the Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust openMAXIMS implementation includes:

  • Patient administration system functionality
  • Patient master index and patient registration
  • Referral triage and management and Choose and Book integration
  • Scheduling, elective waiting list and appointment correspondence
  • Outpatients, including patient check-in via kiosks and electronic outcome tracking
  • Case note tracking
  • Admission, transfer and discharge, real-time bed management and discharge planning
  • Referral to treatment time and cancer pathway monitoring
  • Clinical coding and integration with Medicode Encoder
  • Emergency department
  • Theatre management and anaesthetic record keeping
  • Nursing and allied healthcare professional care planning
  • Operational and management reporting and contract dataset production.

About Taunton and Somerset Foundation Trust
Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust includes Musgrove Park Hospital, the largest acute hospital in Somerset serving a population of over 340,000 as well as providing some specialist and tertiary services for the whole of Somerset with a catchment population of 544,000. It has an annual budget of nearly £246.7 million. The hospital has nearly 600 beds, 30 wards, 15 operating theatres, a fully equipped diagnostic imaging department and a purpose built cancer treatment centre. The trust employs over 4,000 staff.

Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust is one of three founding organisations, along with St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, of a Community Interest Company acting as custodians for source code of the openMAXIMS EPR suite. The organisations aim to help other Trusts looking to use the software by providing the same level of assurances as with a proprietary vendor, with Trusts able to adapt the software for their own needs and share with other members of the CIC.

IMS MAXIMS is a pioneering clinical technology specialist committed to improving the coordination of patient care in healthcare environments. Its expert team works in partnership with healthcare organisations to identify and deliver tailored, sustainable information sharing technology solutions supporting the provision of safer and more efficient care for current and future generations.

The organisation’s 29-year history of collaborating with clinicians has resulted in the development of proven, flexible, user-friendly, safe and interoperable open source electronic patient record software.

With an ambition to meet today’s healthcare challenges, IMS MAXIMS makes its software freely available and offers flexible options to support healthcare providers with implementation and maintenance. Its open technology has increased collaboration in the development of the software which has resulted in better clinical engagement and empowerment across hospital wards and departments.

Deployment times are fast, meaning clinicians and patients can benefit from efficiency and safety improvements in rapid time. It is used across 180 healthcare organisations and by 30,000 users each day to provide clinically-led technology solutions for over 13 million patients.

 Find out more about IMS MAXIMS’ open source solutions at:

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Media contacts

For further information or to arrange an interview with IMS MAXIMS or the trust, contact:
Chris Marsom, Highland Marketing on behalf of IMS MAXIMS
Tel: +44 (0) 1877 332 719
Mob: +44 (0) 7788 393 985


[2] page 32


  • electronic patient record, ims maxims, NHS, Open source, Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust


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