St George's Healthcare's discharge summary project, which started in January 2011, has received positive feedback from GPs to date and has seen the number of discharge summaries dispatched within 24 hours of an inpatient leaving hospital increase from 62% in April 2010 to 82%.
The project team is not only working with hospital clinicians on making sure all inpatient discharge summaries are dispatched to GPs within 24 hours, but are also working on improving the quality of the discharge summaries, ensuring greater continuity of care for patients.
Omar Najim, clinical lead for the project said "As well as being able to see the increase in the number of discharge summaries being dispatched within 24 hours, we have heard anecdotally that some GPs have already seen a positive difference as a result of this work and we would welcome more feedback."
As part of the project the team is running a pilot scheme that sees the trust's new clinical information system create an electronic discharge summary which can be emailed to GPs. The pilot is being tested with a number of local GPs and has been expanded to include speciality teams in plastics, trauma and orthopaedics, the clinical decision unit, chest medicine, thoracic surgery and neurology.
Samantha Akomeah, the project manager said "Electronic discharge summaries should be available to all GP practices very soon. However it will require each practice to have a generic NHSmail account to assure the safety and security of the patient information being transmitted. Ultimately we hope to develop this system so that information will be easily imported into the patients' health records in the GP systems."
So far we only have generic practice NHSmail account details for 50 practices. To submit your practice's generic email details visit www.surveymonkey.com/s/TBDYTDB All information will be treated confidentially and will not be made available to anybody else.
For further information about the pilot, please email: