Bolton NHS Foundation Trust goes live with eObservations

New solution accelerates path to digital maturity and enables clinicians to electronically record patient vital signs via shared mobile devices

Bolton NHS Foundation Trust has extended its deployment of Imprivata OneSign, with the addition of Imprivata Mobile Device Access.

The new solution gives clinicians fast, secure, and auditable access to eObservations, a system that records patient vital signs, via shared mobile devices with just the tap of a proximity badge.

Imprivata Mobile Device Access enables care providers to record and store patient observations securely at the point of care.

Armed with accurate and up-to-date information clinicians can improve outcomes by ensuring patients receive the right level of attendance based on their current status and clinical progression. By analysing patient observations, caregivers can identify any signs of deterioration and make appropriate clinical judgements, significantly improving patient outcomes.

The solution has minimised the administration burden on healthcare professionals and delivered tangible benefits in the care of patients

Phillipa Winter, chief informatics officer at the trust, said: “The primary objective of the eObservations project is to improve patient safety and quality of care, ensuring patients receive the best care to improve outcomes.

“Imprivata Mobile Device Access is an important factor in achieving this goal.

“When time is of the essence, every second counts. And clinicians now have fast and secure access to the most-up-to-date patient information to inform clinical decisions and patient care.”

Bolton NHS FT already uses Imprivata Authentication Management, Single Sign-On, and Virtual Desktop Access for strong authentication and streamlined access to virtualised resources in the trust’s virtual desktop environment.

The solution provides clinicians with fast and easy access to their applications and desktops on iGel thin-client terminals by tapping their identity badges onto terminals equipped with Imprivata OneSign proximity card readers.

In line with the paperless vision outlined in the NHS Five Year Forward View, the trust was ready to launch the eObservations solution on mobile devices.

A sample trial was conducted on a ward, with several devices shared between a number of clinical staff members. To access the solution users were required to manually enter their log-in credentials into three separate applications using the onscreen keyboard in order to record a patient’s vital signs. The lengthy log-in times were proving unpopular in user trials and the IT team at Bolton was keen to find a way of simplifying system access without weakening security processes or breaching audit requirements.

Imprivata Mobile Device Access extends the capabilities of Imprivata OneSign and the Imprivata identity and access management platform. And, following successful testing and user trials, the solution was installed on 500 mobile devices which were deployed over eight weeks as part of the eObservations project.

As a result, Bolton has been able to unlock the full potential of its devices, ensuring fast and efficient access to the eObservations system while maintaining security and auditability.

More than 1,000 members of staff now have access to the mobile devices which are located in banks of between 7-10 devices on wards across the trust.

The ease of accessing applications has reduced barriers to using the devices, because staff can quickly log in and out of the tablets with just a tap of their badge.

Observations are conducted regularly on patients according to their care plan and entered directly via the mobile device, removing the need for maintaining paper records.

When time is of the essence, every second counts. And clinicians now have fast and secure access to the most-up-to-date patient information to inform clinical decisions and patient care

Dr Simon Irving, chief clinical information officer at the trust, said: “The solution has minimised the administration burden on healthcare professionals and delivered tangible benefits in the care of patients.

“The positive impact has driven us to review what other applications we can make accessible via mobile devices to staff on the move.

“We now have the potential to deliver more applications into the hands of clinicians and utilise technology to make a measurable difference in patient care without compromising information security.”

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