[Oxford, UK/ Implementations] - NHS Oxfordshire is contacting patients in the county to prepare for the rollout of the Summary Care Record. Every patient registered at a GP practice in Oxfordshire aged 16 years and over is being sent a letter this month to explain what the summary care records are, their benefits, and that patients need to make a choice about whether they have the records or not.
The summary care records will give healthcare professionals faster, easier access to reliable and accurate information about patients to help with their care, particularly in an emergency, or when seeing a doctor out-of-hours when the GP practice is closed. The records will be made up of national and local parts:
- The national Summary Care Record (SCR): this record is held nationally and will be available across England to support emergency care and will contain three things: the patient′s allergies; medications; and any adverse reactions to medicines that they have.
- The local Oxfordshire Care Summary (OCS): this is ‘view only′ and will provide more detailed information than the national Summary Care Record and will only be available to local healthcare professionals involved in a patient′s treatment in Oxfordshire. This will include: demographic information; information about services the patient is receiving from NHS organisations; encounter information (appointments and admissions); medications; medical history; allergies; vaccinations; general health factors; test results; care plans; referral letters and discharge summaries.
Healthcare professionals log onto the OCS using a unique login and record the authority they have to access the system, including the patient′s permission. For the SCR, a healthcare professional must have an NHS smartcard with chip and passcode, and log on using N3 the NHS secure network. They must also ask permission from the patient before accessing the patient′s record. A detailed audit trail is generated every time a patient record is viewed.
Dr Andy Chivers, clinical lead for the Oxfordshire Care Summary said: “The Oxfordshire Care Summary will improve patient care especially in more complex cases where the GP record may hold vital information not otherwise available, such as blood test results or drug side effects. Control and monitoring of access to the data will be taken very seriously so we can assure Oxfordshire residents that their information is only viewed when necessary for medical care.”
Dr Stephen Richards, Chief Executive of Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (OCCG) added, “The GPs in OCCG recognise the problems that arise when a patient′s records are not available to doctors outside normal GP surgery hours. We are striving to create a more integrated health system and sharing the most clinically important aspects of a patient′s records is a key part of improving health outcomes for the people of Oxfordshire.” [hw] [Photo: Churchill Entrance]
NHS Oxfordshire information on the summary care records