Devon Partnership NHS Trust boosts productivity and patient safety with My Flu Jab app

Cloud-based digital health app enables easier recording, real-time reporting and improved external submission

UKCloud Health has announced the successful completion of a collaboration with Devon Partnership NHS Trust to implement My Flu Jab App, a cloud-based app developed by the trust to support staff during the winter flu period.

As the health service in England faces continued pressure following a series of recent cold snaps; it is no longer enough simply to count on the commitment and hard work of staff to overcome some of its most-challenging circumstances for years.

Facing persistently-high flu hospitalisations, a renewed spike in norovirus, and prolonged cold weather just like all other trusts; Devon Partnership NHS Trust has weathered the storm better than most thanks to a new app it developed called ‘My Flu Jab’.

The Devon Partnership NHS Trust is leading the way in digital health, demonstrating that innovation, coupled with advances in the capabilities of devices and the cloud processing and storage that supports them, can really make a difference

The app, which was developed by the informatics team at the trust, and is hosted remotely by UKCloud Health, has enabled staff to significantly improve their productivity by speeding up the data recording process and eliminating errors.

With a paper-based process, vaccination recoding would have taken eight minutes each, they now take less than two minutes – a 75% decrease in administration time.

And, where it once took 5-6 hours to manually trawl through data to find out how many people have been vaccinated, sometimes even taking days; this can now be done in real-time.

In all it is estimated that a total of 16 days were saved by eliminating manual tasks, allowing valuable resources to be redirected to promoting flu vaccination.

Another issue with the paper process was either the inaccuracy or loss of information, with incomplete or missing forms causing significant problems.

The app’s electronic form includes built-in validation checks to ensure accuracy. And national data returns, which were once a lengthy and manual exercise, are now automated and streamlined, and records include a complete audit history.

“Putting the app to the test during the challenging flu outbreak for years, might not have been the easiest proving ground, but ‘My Flu Jab’ has more than proven its worth,” explained Rony Arafin, assistant director of informatics at the trust.

“Indeed, it made everything from data recording and reporting so much easier that our vaccinators wouldn’t want to be without it.

“Not only did it make their jobs appreciably easier, but our improved efficiency ensured a swifter and more-effective process, thereby also improving patient safety.

“And it allowed us to reinvest time in further promoting the flu vaccination campaign in order to maximise flu vaccine uptake, all aimed at keeping our staff and patients safe.”

“The Devon Partnership NHS Trust is leading the way in digital health, demonstrating that innovation, coupled with advances in the capabilities of devices and the cloud processing and storage that supports them, can really make a difference,” added Simon Hansford, chief executive of UKCloud Health.

“Not only do we think that other trusts can obviously benefit from an app like ‘My Flu Jab’, but we expect to see a host of other apps being deployed to help address many of the other challenges that the NHS faces.”

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