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encompass stepping up system build plans

3rd September 2021

encompass logoencompass continue to build on the good work completed across HSCNI to date, as they prepare and move through the main phases to deliver the new digital care record.

Epic was awarded the contract to partner with encompass and HSCNI to develop the new system which is scheduled to be in use across all five Trusts by 2025.

Epic Systems is one of the largest providers of health information technology, used primarily by large hospitals and health systems to access, organize, store and share electronic medical records.

Since the contract award in 2020, work has focused on Pre-work activities such as completion of legacy data collection and groundwork and establishment of our Design Authorities, Advisory Councils, and Decision and Design groups in preparation for moving to the next phase.

Workflow Walkthrough and Configuration (Virtual on 7 – 9 September 2021)
HSCNI Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) will work closely with encompass and Epic to build a solid foundation to develop and build the new system to ensure it meets our needs and requirements.  At the various Workflow Walkthrough sessions a wide range of staff will experience the encompass solution in action and learn how transformational the new digital record will be in improving patient safety and creating better experiences for patients, service users and staff.

User and system readiness (April 2022 – January 2023)
During this phase the system build will complete and rigorous testing will be carried out to make sure it is ready for the demands of HSCNI.

Training, Go Live and Post Go Live Support (January 2023-March 2025)
Staff will be trained in the months leading up to their local go-live.  The system will ‘Go Live’ on a Trust by Trust basis. These will be major events and will be planned for meticulously to minimise any disruption to services. There will be several Go Live readiness assessments and technical dress rehearsals undertaken in preparation. This approach is recommended by Epic and endorsed throughout the procurement phase and in discussions with Trust staff, patients and carers.

South Eastern Health and Social Care Trust      Go Live – March 2023
Belfast Health and Social Care Trust                    Go Live – September 2023
Health and Social Care Trust 3                              Go Live – April 2024
Health and Social Care Trust 4                              Go Live – October 2024
Health and Social Care Trust 5                              Go Live – March 2025

Once all main implementations are completed, further work will be carried out to refine and enhance the system during the Optimisation phase (March 2025 – April 2027).

Planned benefits of the new system

  • It’s where medical notes will be made, medicines prescribed, tests ordered and referrals made and received.
  • It will provide real-time, up to date information to all those involved in caring for our patients, empowering HSC staff to make efficient and effective, patient-centred decisions.
  • It will replace a number of current ageing HSC ICT systems, foremost being the 30 year old Patient Administration Systems (PAS) and will provide access to a single source of information about each patient.
  • It will replace most of our paper-based care processes which will allow staff to spend more time directly on patient care.
  • It will improve safety by allowing all professionals involved in a person’s care to view the same information and add guidelines to support decision making and safety alerts.
  • It will give patients access to their medical records, enabling them to book their appointments, review test results and engage in their health in partnership with health.
  • It will give encompass an opportunity to develop the ‘digital front door’ to the HSC in terms of access, triage, support for self-care and even treatment, the urgency of which has been underlined by Covid-19.

For more information