30238 - Out-patients: Databases (Answered)

Andrew Gwynne
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to improve the systems for capturing, coding and integrating data from NHS outpatient clinics.

George Freeman

Where local National Health Service trusts have identified local requirements for improving the capture of clinical and administrative information, including those in outpatient departments, funds have been made available to NHS providers for electronic systems through the Integrated Digital Care Fund and the South Local Clinical Systems Programmes. These include patient administration, patient record, and document management systems which will help the recording and accessing data at the point of care.

The National Information Board’s Personalised Health and Care 2020 framework, published in November 2014, supports further action to improve systems for capturing, coding and integrating data from NHS outpatient departments.

Work being taken forward under Personalised Health and Care 2020 includes:

― improving the recording and accessing of data at the point of care - around £1.4 billion of the recently announced £4.2 billion investment in NHS technology over the next five years will support the better collection of data and the commitment to become paper-free at the point of care;

― work to examine ways in which outpatient departments can improve the way they capture activity data using standardised coding terminology (SNOMED CT), so that it can be made available to other parts of a hospital, and support reporting and clinical audit; and

― a focus on the integration of information within and between care settings, starting with impatient transfers of care, and expanding in 2017-18 to cover other care domains, including the exchange of outpatient information between acute trusts and general practitioner surgeries.