The Princess Alexandra Hospital (PAH) was the first large public hospital in Australia to replace paper-based medical records with electronic medical records. This means that all patients’ medical information is documented and accessed via a secure electronic medical record, across all PAH health services including acute medical, surgical, mental health, cancer, rehabilitation and allied health services.
In 2014, the foundations of the digital hospital at PAH were built with implementations in scanning, allergy and alerts and the renal haemodialysis module.
In 2015, we completed roll-outs in outpatients and radiology, perioperative, emergency and inpatient settingsIn early 2016 we completed the rollout of phase one of our digital hospital system to become the nation’s first large scale digital hospital.
In March 2017 PAH completed the rollout phase of MARS.MARS stands for medications management, anaesthesia and research support. From the MARS rollout, the EMR provides support for doctors, nurses and pharmacists in prescribing, verifying and administering medicines to our patients (closed loop).
The documentation of anaesthetics has been added to the ieMR, through the addition of the SA Anaesthesia module (replacing WinChart) and installation of specialist devices, to be used by anaesthetists and theatre nurses during pre-op, intra-op and post-op workflows.
Further, the addition of the PowerTrials application to the ieMR at PAH supports clinical trials and studies by improving access for our patients and researchers to information about current and future trials.
The PAH digital hospital team continues to provide clinical support to staff for digital hospital systems and devices. An ongoing optimisation process ensures that opportunities for improvements are recognised.
The benefits brought to the PAH by the digital hospital system include:
- An increase in the early identification of deteriorating patients (Rapid Response Team calls made for ED patients transferred to ward)
- A decrease in re-tests for pathology orders
- An increase in formal endorsement of renal lab pathology results
- An increase in formal endorsement of ED radiology results
- A decrease in emergency readmissions within 28 days of discharge
- A decrease in inpatient length of stay (average for all admissions)
- A decrease in the effort associated with managing medical records
- A decrease in reported falls with injury (per 10,000 bd days)
- A decrease in infection rates (rate of healthcare associated SAAB per 10,000 bed days)
- A decrease in stationery costs for clinical forms
Is the Digital Hospital system safe for patients?
Digital hospital systems are proven to improve patient safety in hospitals in Australia and overseas. Measurable benefits in a digital hospital include reduced adverse effects due to medications errors, and faster response times for deteriorating patients.
How will the State-wide system be suitable for our hospital?
The ieMR system has been designed and built to support state wide clinical protocols, procedures and standards for health care, applicable across all hospitals in Queensland. In some cases, a hospital has clinical workflows which are unique to that hospital.