News, Primary Care News, Secondary Care

Leeds first city to fully join up with GP Connect

NHS Digital has announced that all clinicians across Leeds will be able to access patients’ previous encounters with GPs, improving the data link between the care received at primary and secondary care.

The GP Connect service allows GP practices and authorised clinical staff to share and view GP records digitally and allows them to make better decisions about a patient’s care.

The service is available to all GP practices in Leeds after GP system supplier TPP last month joined EMIS Health in implementing GP Connect.

In future, GP Connect will also provide secure access to structured medications and allergies information in a patient’s record and will be used to enable quicker and more efficient appointment management between practices.

Cath Johnson, Clinical Lead for GP Connect at NHS Digital said: “Enabling this vital integration in Leeds is a fantastic achievement for all involved and we are delighted that GP Connect is now being used to improve patient experience and care across the city”.

Andy Webster, Consultant in Emergency Medicine & CCIO (Clinical & Medical) at Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust said: “The GP Connect initiative will be transformational to clinicians working in the hospital to enable them to deliver more informed patient care. Primary care information is often key to many of the decisions we make on a daily basis. Access to this information will enable access to information from GP systems 24 hours a day 7 days a week. It will also reduce the administration burden for GP practices having to send information often by insecure communication routes such as fax”.

Richard Corbridge, Chief Digital & Information Officer at Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust said: “GP Connect connectivity improves the way data can be used as information in clinical practice throughout the city.Delivering integrated care for the population is the key goal for every healthcare system and why the investment in digital is so intrinsic to the success of healthcare as a system rather than as silos of excellence.

“In Leeds we can now plan to have a fully integrated primary care, social care, hospital care and mental health care record in place throughout the city in 2019, a giant leap and a unique proposition for the NHS.”

Dr John Parry, Clinical Director at TPP said; “This is a very important step to ensuring that patients benefit from having their medical records available for those caring for them to see, wherever they are receiving care. SystmOne was created to enable clinical records to be available where needed, and this is a further step in the right direction. I hope that patients and clinicians across the country see immediate benefits.”

Dr Shaun O’Hanlon, chief medical officer at EMIS Group said: “We are delighted that connectivity via GP Connect is available right across Leeds. This important partnership with NHS Digital is part of our company’s wider commitment to providing the tools for system interoperability using open NHS standards across the UK, and helping clinicians drive up standards of joined up patient care.”