London North West NHS Trust Introduces Digital Platform

London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust (LNWH) has signed a new contract with digital company Infinity Health to revolutionise care coordination and task management for patients across its rapid response and early supported discharge service, based at Northwick Park Hospital. The project is the second between the two organisations, and provides a digital task management platform and mobile solution to replace the previous outdated system and printed paper lists. The project aims to improve communications within the service in the interest of patients, making it easier and more efficient for staff to see and manage their care tasks from their hospital base or in the community.

Infinity Health is a UK-based digital health supplier, providing digital tools to manage and monitor clinical and operational tasks, smooth handover, and give appropriate multidisciplinary visibility in real-time. The move ensures staff in LNWH’s short-term assessment, rehabilitation and reablement service (STARRS) can easily prioritise and track tasks, and collaborate across functions. This will have the effect of optimising workflows, which in turn will provide increased value for money.

STARRS is an essential service aiming to reduce the demand on busy A&E departments and acute wards within its footprint. It supports patients who might otherwise have to stay in hospital or be admitted following an A&E attendance or deterioration of a medical condition to be discharged safely to their homes. The service runs 365 days a year, supporting almost 9,000 patients annually in the London boroughs of Brent, Ealing, and Harrow.

The STARRS clinical team is made up of 45 members of frontline staff that carry out visits to acutely unwell patients or patients recovering from surgeries such as mastectomy and total hip replacement. Tasks may include urgent blood tests to diagnose possible life-threatening conditions, clinical observations and checks for signs of serious infection, controlled-drug administration, and referrals to social services for vulnerable patients in need of extra support.

Northwick Park Hospital

Sonia Patel, joint Chief Information Officer, London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust, said: “This partnership is part of our ongoing work to provide a better digital offer for our people. Care coordination is principally about manage tasks in the interest of patient care. This new development is the foundation to delivering integrated care and NHS Long Term plan ambitions. Infinity Health has been a fantastic partner and they take user experience very seriously, by listening and working with us to understand what we need, and configuring its tools to meet them. The gains made in other areas of the trust as a result of Infinity Health have been considerable, and we hope to bring these to STARRS service, staff and patients with this project.”

Glenys Lawson, Digital Matron, London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust, said: “Efficient and effective management of clinical and operational tasks is fundamental to the smooth running of any health service, and the safety of its patients. Moving away from paper-based methods promotes efficiency and ultimately affects patient and staff experience. We are delighted to announce our new collaboration with Infinity, which will provide this.”

Edgar Swart, STARRS Head Nurse, London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust, said: “STARRS’ work is vital to help patients receive support safely and happily in their own homes, and our staff need tools that are fit for purpose. Infinity Health’s digital task management system makes it easier for my team to prioritise, plan, and carry out our daily care work. Ultimately, we want and need to spend time with our patients to provide caring, effective, and safe services, and this partnership will ensure the time is released and our patients continue to get the care they deserve.”

Elliott Engers, CEO, Infinity Health, said: “It is fantastic to be working with LNWH for a second time, building on our successful work improving patient flow in the Emergency Department. This project puts the technology NHS staff need to do their jobs more efficiently directly into their hands, freeing up time to care, and reducing the administrative burden. It’s encouraging to see more and more NHS trusts embrace and reap the rewards of 21st century digital technologies, and LNWH is making great strides to be one of those leading the way.”

LNWH’s first partnership with Infinity Health transformed the way porter requests were made to transform the way patient transfers were coordinated within Northwick Park’s Emergency Department, transitioning them from static paper to real-time digital. This won an HSJ Award and an HTN Award for saving 10,000 hours of staff time in its first year, which translates to five full-time equivalents.