Information join-up between London and the East of England supports safer, more effective care for patients

Secure information sharing between London’s health and care providers and Hertfordshire and West Essex Integrated Care System (ICS) in the East of England will give NHS care teams real-time access to patient records, helping them to better understand the needs of their patients and make the best decisions about their care.

Frontline health and care professionals in providers across Hertfordshire and West Essex can now see up-to-date information about their patients referred to London providers via the London Care Record. This join-up of information will help to streamline transfer of care, avoids patients having to repeat their information, supports provision of safe treatment, and avoids repeat investigations. Having this complete picture of a person’s health and care information means that doctors, nurses, and wider care teams can be reassured that they are providing the most effective, personalised care for an individual.

This work is being led by OneLondon in partnership with Hertfordshire and West Essex Shared Care Record. It builds on the work of OneLondon to transform health and care services across the capital through joined-up, integrated care. This includes the implementation of the London Care Record – a single shared care record that provides a real-time view of a person’s information from over time and across organisations and geographies in London.

This join-up of information follows extensive public engagement, including a large-scale Citizens’ Summit where participants mandated health and care organisations to link identifiable information to support the provision of care to individuals.

Information sharing between health and care providers in London with providers across Hertfordshire and West Essex is enabled by a secure network of health information exchanges (HIE). Hertfordshire and West Essex is the first ICS in the East of England to be connected to the London Care Record. It is the second connection to be made beyond London, following the join-up with Milton Keynes University Hospital earlier this year. This new milestone supports a wider NHS ambition to create a network of shared care records across England to benefit faster, safer, more effective patient care.

Luke Readman, Chief Officer of OneLondon and Director of Digital Transformation for NHS England (London Region), commented:

“OneLondon is responding to the call from our neighbouring regions to support the join-up of health and care information for the purposes of direct care. People living outside of London routinely access health and care services inside the capital – particularly those from neighbouring geographies like Hertfordshire and Essex. Linking health and care information safely and securely across these geographical boundaries means that doctors, nurses, and other health and care professionals can better understand the needs of their patients, and make the best decisions for their care.”

Graeme Jeffs, Programme Director, Digital Interoperability for Hertfordshire and West Essex ICS, stated:

“We are delighted to make this significant step forward with OneLondon to join up health and care information for people who move between our services. We know that many people in Hertfordshire and West Essex travel for their specialist care to London, and this will improve their care and save valuable time for our busy staff.

“We are still in the early stages of implementing the Shared Care Record locally, and more organisations will be sharing data in the coming months. Having real-time, secure access to information from the London Care Record will bring immediate benefits for health and care services in our area during this extremely difficult time.”

More information about OneLondon’s extensive public engagement, including the Citizens’ Summit, is available here.

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