Byline: Steve Johnson
HEALTH services across Sandwell are to be improved with the development of a pounds 1.6 million electronic patient record.
The system, which will be accessible 24 hours a day by doctors and medical staff throughout the area, is set for completion by March 2005.
Details are contained in a document detailing the information technology strategy of Sandwell Healthcare NHS Trust now being circulated to health chiefs and Trust board members.
One of its main aims is to create a complete computerised record of all patients, linking hospitals, GP surgeries and other health facilities.
It will allow electronic prescribing, drugs-ordering and reporting of test results, with doctors able to book services and refer patients electronically direct from their surgeries. It will also give all health staff access to e-mail and the NHS website.
Last autumn the Trust went 'live' with the Medway Patient Administration System and the patient index database already deals with basic administration such as names, addresses, GP, outpatient and inpatient history. …