Secondary Care

8 children’s centres across Greater Manchester digitally connected

A new reporting system is being rolled out this month across eight NHS organisations in Greater Manchester.

The system is being rolled-out to children’s centres to instantly share information such as bed availability and staffing levels. It has been designed specifically for paediatric care, where more staff per patient are needed.

By introducing the new system the organisations hope children and young people needing hospital care will now have more chance of being cared for locally, and staff can instantly see if there are children that need greater support.

The system is part of the Greater Manchester Digital Platform, a solution that allows data from multiple sources to be re-used by a variety of systems.

Julie Flaherty, consultant nurse, Royal Oldham hospital, said: “We’ve had a central paediatric bed management bureau for around six years but we’ve been capturing this information manually until now – this has involved staff calling round each organisation at least four times a day and collating the information on paper.”

“Because we need to guarantee safe staffing levels, we often have to close beds when staff are absent at short notice. As we only have 200 children’s secondary care beds across Greater Manchester, this has a massive impact. Often children had to be transferred to other hospitals and sometimes this means they have to go out of Greater Manchester to places like Blackburn, Preston and even Bangor!”

“If I know I’ve got five nurses, I know I can open 20 beds – the system tells us how many nurses are on each shift, how many beds which organisation has and how many patients we have in. It also tells us at a glance how many HDU beds we have available or full for the more sicker babies and children.”

“It also tells us how many children are in assessment units so we can predict how many children are likely to be coming onto the wards later that day, as well as what type of patients they are.”

The digital system can be viewed across all eight hospitals and other community nurses can view the information, as well as teams from the Urgent care Network and Intensive Care Network.

The eight NHS sites include: The Royal Oldham Hospital, North Manchester General Hospital, University Hospital of South Manchester and Central Manchester University Hospital, Stockport NHS FT, Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS FT, Royal Bolton Hospital NHS FT and Royal Albert Edward infirmary, Wigan (Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh Teaching Hospitals NHS FT).