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2Go Features, User Adoption

How using 2Go, Universal Mobile Access could benefit the NHS

A recent conversation about the potential benefits to be gained within Acute Services in the NHS through the adoption of one of the features of 2Go Universal Mobile Access has given me a reason to consider what the larger impact might be upon the NHS, its workforce and patients if fuller use could be made of such as solution as 2Go Universal Mobile Access.

I’m sure that we will uncover further benefits over time as the use of 2Go Universal Mobile Access within healthcare gets more widely accepted, but for now, I’d like to focus on 4 key areas:

  1. Time savings
  2. Cost Savings
  3. The beneficial impact on patient safety
  4. Beneficial impact on staff safety

Each one of these is, in its own right, an important factor, but taken as a whole, and there is significant potential for significant benefits to accrue using this approach.

Let’s consider Time:

Doctor saving time

An emergency doctor, Dr Adam Radford, working at the Royal University Hospital of Bath has looked at how 2Go Universal Mobile Access’s ability to enable him to use the voice recognition facility with a mobile device to allow him to dictate notes directly into patient records systems.

To him, this offers the prospect of saving between 10 and 15 minutes every time he needs to record a Finished Consultant Episode (FCE) for a patient. While this may not seem a significant time saving, in practice this could allow Dr Radford and his 7,500+ emergency doctor peers working within the NHS [1] to treat some 26% more patients in A&E and, as a result, ensure better performance against the target of dealing with 95% of patients within 4-hours.

This could result in close to 300 additional patients a day being treated in A&E across the NHS Acute Services alone and nearly 400 extra patients a day being treated if the same savings can be identified in Day Case, Elective Inpatient, Non-elective Inpatient and Outpatient services.

One other aspect of time, which can be saved through the deployment of 2Go Universal Mobile Access technology is the reduction in time staff spend each day walking to and from the ward desktop to enter or review information about the patients within their care.

A study has shown that staff walk on average 3.6 miles a day and, in one extreme case, up to 11 miles a day! [2]  This equates to an hour a day spent walking, and if we assume that 10% of this time is spent walking to and from the ward computer, then this effort and time can be reduced.

Finally, let’s consider the time taken to arrive at a current impression of the state of a patient’s health. Currently, there are multiple opportunities for a single patient to be in contact with NHS services and each “discipline” tends to have their own discrete systems but often holding similar information, e.g. a Trusted Assessment.

The next doctor to consider the patient currently must spend time wading through many logins etc. to try to form “a holistic view” of the patient’s current state, sometimes with missing content. Through the use of Multiple Concurrent Views, 2Go Universal Mobile Access can provide a quick cross-discipline view of the Trusted Assessments in order of most recent interaction. This might save up to a further 15 minutes of a doctor’s time in dealing with each FCE.

Now let’s turn to Cost:

healthcare costs reducing

The financial impact of saving 10 – 15 minutes per FCE could result in significant savings to NHS Trusts as even within Acute Services and assuming only 1 FCE per patient per annum this would amount to £22 million or £110 million over the initial 5-year life of the 2Go Universal Mobile Access solution.

Grossed up across the other areas of the NHS (Day Cases, Elective Inpatients …..) the figures are even more impressive at nearly £300 million a year or £1.5 billion over five years.

Again, with the saving of say 6 minutes per day per nurse estimated from the walking study and taking into account the number of nurses in the NHS (311,380 [3]) and the average salary (£34,000 [4]), this could equate to a saving of over £500,000 a year or £2.5 million over five years.

As shown above, a saving of as little as 10 minutes per FCE could result in savings of nearly £300 million a year. The assumed saving of 15 minutes in preparing for “a holistic view” of a patient via 2Go Universal Mobile Access’s Multiple Concurrent View approaches could add a further £450 million a year to this total!

Below is the savings 2 Go Mobile can save across the NHS Trusts. 

2Go Mobile Universal Mobile Access in NHS Trusts

 

2Go Universal Mobile Access in NHS A and E cost saving

To see this in action, please click and visit our NHS Saving Calculator resource page.

 

Such discussions, however, fail to address a couple of important areas, so let’s first address the beneficial impact upon Patient Safety:

Patient being safely treated

Although apocryphal, the oft-quoted comment about doctor’s handwriting being undecipherable does, however, raise important considerations of patient safety. If the next doctor to review your notes is unable to decipher the handwriting of the previous practitioner, or worse, mistakes entries in the notes, this can lead to a significant risk of mistakes inpatient care and/or medication.

Any process which converts such a hand-written approach to note-taking to one which is recorded digitally will reduce the likelihood of mistaken reading, but this is reliant upon the skill and speed of the typing ability of the doctor entering the notes.

This is where 2Go Universal Mobile Access’s voice recognition-based data capture comes into its own as it enables the doctor to dictate notes directly into the patient record, review on-screen, and amend where necessary.

One other impact of the implementation of 2Go Universal Mobile Access in Acute Services is the rate at which doctors can move on to treating the next patient, estimated to be 10 -15 minutes faster than at present. This increase in efficiency should have a beneficial impact on waiting times, and it is estimated could reduce an average 4 hour target time to around 3 hours 11 minutes. This means that patients can be treated more quickly and either discharged or admittedly more rapidly.  

Overall, the use of mobile working technology will also improve patient safety as it will enable doctors and nurses to review the case notes in a more timely fashion without having to wait for the last person to see the patient walking back to the ward computer (and sometimes queuing!) to enter the notes – they can be captured at the bedside.

Finally, there should be a very positive impact on Staff safety:

Try typing with these on!

This results from the requirement of staff to wear full Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as part of the Standard Infection Control Procedures (SICPs) and has obviously been brought sharply into focus by the Covid-19 pandemic.

What may be new to people, is that there is a body of opinion that there is an increased risk to the staff of contracting Covid-19 at the time of removing PPE as this may be carrying the virus at the time and with, on average, up to 4 changes in PPE per shift taking place, any reduction in the need to remove PPE also reduces the risk!

Eliminating the need to remove gloves to type also brings another benefit in that before staff can don a new set of gloves, they must rewash their hands, all leading to taking longer to complete the same number of tasks.

The voice recognition-based data capture facility within 2Go Universal Mobile Access can be accessed directly via the mobile device in use by the practitioner and does not need them to, for example, remove gloves to type.

Typing also raises another problem with accessing keyboards etc. at present which is that, with some equipment in communal use, there is a need to “deep clean” after every use and another potential risk area of infection if this is either missed or not conducted correctly.  Personal mobile devices can be relatively easily and quickly swabbed clean regularly.

The reduction in walking time created through remote working should also benefit staff, leaving them less tired at the end of a shift and lead to better staff health and morale.


[1] Source: Key Facts & Figures about the NHS – The Kings Fund 8 November 2019

[2] Source: Nursing Times – 11 January 2016

[3] Source: Key Facts & Figures about the NHS – The Kings Fund 8 November 2019

[4] Source: Nurses.co.uk website

You can also find more on our 2Go in Healthcare page.

 

2Go No Code Mobilemobile workingrapid secure mobileremote working

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David Monks

Responsible for the day-to-day operations at iNovar. David's current focus is to scale 2Go through partnerships with System Integrators and Consultants.

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