Paperless programme aims to link social care with hospitals

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An NHS trust is bringing in a paperless system to transfer patients back into the community.

A new programme has been launched in the north-west of England that will see care providers in the community linked with local hospitals in order to improve patient care.

Furness General Hospital will share paperwork with social care services so that when people are discharged from hospital, they can enjoy a seamless transition back to their ordinary lives, the Westmorland Gazette reports.

However, rather than transferring piles of documents and records, they will share the information using paperless technology.

It is part of a wider plan by the Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group and other hospitals in the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Trust will also join in over the coming weeks.

County manager for Adult Social Care Brenda Chambers said: "This is a real step forward towards a completely paperless system that tracks people’s transition from Acute and Community Hospitals back to the community … following acute or medical treatment. It enables agencies to work together with shared information to produce better assessments, support and outcomes for people as they return home."

Dr Leanne Cooper, service manager for acute and emergency medicine at the Morecambe Bay trust, added that the move will mean a "completely auditable electronic history of the patient’s journey" is created, so fewer errors should be made in future treatment.

It is not just patients who can benefit from paperless technology, as it is significantly helps the environment too. A recent study by WeGotTickets found that if all the 40 million entertainment tickets sold in the UK each year are posted out to buyers, it has the same environmental impact as a London bus circumnavigating the globe five times.

However, paperless delivery of the same tickets would use 100 times less energy.

All businesses can get on the action, whether they are healthcare providers, ticket sellers or something completely different – and Dajon Data Management can help by providing bespoke document scanning solutions.

Piles of paperwork such as legal documents can be converted into a variety of image formats including JPEG, TIFF and PDF, which can then be indexed and made searchable for easy access later on.

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