Hi-Tech Nurses use Digi-Pens for Data Entry to Patient Records

by Paul Martin -

Hi-tech nurses in Portsmouth’s hospitals have ditched traditional notepad and pens for an electronic alternative – saving the NHS £220,000 ($330,000 USD) a year.

The digital notation devices communicate wirelessly with hospital records through a BlackBerry smartphone.  This enables the nurses and midwives to store patient information remotely and securely, transferring data almost instantly.

The Portsmouth NHS Trust believes its PaperIQ digi-pens save time and money by cutting the amount of data entry in half.

The pens work by digitally reading and recording the nurses’ handwriting. Their notes are transmitted through Bluetooth to a BlackBerry smartphone and are forwarded automatically to the patient records system.

Richard Sargent, ICT specialist at Portsmouth Hospital Trust said: “The traditional consultation process for the Trust was very paper intensive and required midwives and nurses to record their activities on paper forms when they visited patients’ homes.

“They then had to type up the same details back at the office as the maternity records booklet stays with the mother throughout the term of her pregnancy and post natal care period.”

The clever pens also act as a safety device for lone nurses working in risky situations. By striking a code at the top of their notepads the pens switch to an audio record mode, allowing police to monitor their conversations.

Mr Sargent said the pens have saved the time of five full time midwives and – after a year’s usage – have already paid for themselves.

He added: “We are eliminating the double entry of information as digital notes are taken at the episode of care with the mother and then immediately and securely transferred to the patient record system.”

Currently 130 midwives, across four hospitals, are using the digi-pens. The Trust is looking to roll them out to other departments, starting with a trial at the Queen Alexandra accident and emergency department in Portsmouth.

For more information, check out E-Health Insider

-via Yahoo News

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