We’ve started doing work with an NHS Trust around the automation of the processes of their Electronic Referral System (ERS).
Typically, most Trusts are receiving around 4,000 Electronic Referrals from ERS per month (excluding cancellations, did not attends and request for appointment slots). Although ERS is commonly integrated directly with the EPR vendor via HL7 interfaces, these older interfaces do not provide the ability for the doctor to view the appointment details, referral letters or any other attachments, like images. Without this information, the appointment is virtually useless as the doctor cannot make an informed decision.
As a work around, most Trusts are manually transcribing the required information from the ERS system into their EPR across 4000+ appointment every month, which creates huge amounts of extra cost and increases clinical risk due to the human error associated with missing key information, mistyping, or missing certain appointments.
To mitigate this risk and help the Trusts significantly reduce costs, NHS Digital have now released FHIR interfaces to do this integration and we have already done the analysis on how to use them and to fully automate the process.
If you are interested in hearing about how to fully automate these processes for your Trust, please get in contact.