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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
Better Together

Your Care Connected goes live in BSMHFT

Published: 12/02/2015

Nine out of ten patients surveyed in Birmingham think medical professionals should be able to view their GP medical records when treating them in hospital.

That was the result of a recent survey of Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull patients carried out on behalf of the Your Care Connected programme.

Your Care Connected is safe electronic system that allows appropriate doctors and nurses to view important, relevant information from GP records to make patient care safer.

Doctors and nurses treating some patients in Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull are taking part in a proof of concept trial of Your Care Connected, which will allow them, with permission, to use a web tool to look up and view relevant parts of their patient’s GP medical record.

Your Care Connected

Your Care Connected is designed to: cut down delays in treatment, avoid unnecessary overnight stays in hospital; cut down on repeat tests and x-rays and avoid mis-diagnosis often associated with delays in accessing existing medical information.

Dr Gavin Ralston, Chair of Birmingham Cross City CCG, the organisation which is co-ordinating this project said: “This is a potentially very exciting breakthrough for the care of patients in Birmingham.

“If the initial trial is successful and is shown to benefit patients, we then plan to make this available to all the 1.5 million people in Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull.  We are confident that it will enable even better, safer care and ensure that vital information is available when it is most needed.

“The trial will involve approximately 120,000 patients, taken from eight GP practices from across the city, the three large acute hospital trusts and a mental health trust.

“Each of the patients who were asked to take part received a comprehensive information pack, which hopefully explained very clearly what is involved. An opt-out form was included, so that those who did not want to participate could simply complete it and then post it back, free of charge.

“However, I am pleased to say that only 1.5 per cent of patients have opted out of the trial. It is perhaps worth stressing again though, that the records of the patients who have decided to participate cannot be accessed without their direct consent being given, unless the circumstances are truly exceptional.

Interestingly the very large survey that we have recently carried out shows overwhelming support for this project, with most people thinking that this was already possible! Hopefully over the next few months this will actually become the reality, allowing more seamless, safer medical care to take place.”

For more information visit www.midlandsyourcareconnected.nhs.uk