Care home staff are reporting that having access to the London Care Record is helping them provide more effective care for their residents while also saving them time (31 January 2023).
The London Care Record is a single and secure view of a person’s health and care information which helps ensure frontline staff across the Capital have the information they need about a person when they need it. It is used by over 55,000 health and care staff in London and some neighbouring areas each month.
Late in 2022, as part of a pilot programme, the first care homes in the Capital were connected to the London Care Record meaning that for the first time they can access wider and key information about their residents from a range of health and care settings across London.
In just few weeks the London Care Record has been viewed around 1,500 times by care home staff with the most viewed information being hospital discharge summaries, diagnostic reports, laboratory results and care plans.
Early feedback from care home managers shows that having access to more complete information is helping their staff provide more effective care to residents, saving them valuable time and helping them provide reassurance to relatives. This includes:
- Preventing delays when residents are discharged from hospital as discharge summaries can be viewed within the London Care Record.
- Having the full picture of a resident’s allergies and medical conditions which may not have been previously disclosed when they were admitted to the home.
- Avoiding unnecessary hospital admissions and being better placed to respect the care preferences of their residents by having access to their care plans.
- Automatically knowing when medication has been prescribed and dispensed rather than having to manually check with individual GP surgeries and pharmacies.
- Being able to view the treatment and condition of residents admitted to hospital enabling the care home to more effectively plan their care on their return.
- Having access to the right information to answer questions from relatives and reassure them about the care their loved ones are receiving.
Marie Bannister, Registered Manager Sutton Court Care Home, said:
“When our residents were discharged from hospital, we used to have to wait until we had a paper copy of the discharge summary despite asking for an electronic discharge before they could come home to us. However now we can have access to this information automatically in the London Care Record which helps to prevent these types of delays. We find this to be a much better outcome for the residents but also frees up beds quicker at the hospital.”
Pauline Humphrey, Registered Manager Kallar Lodge Care Home, said:
“One of our residents with dementia was recently in a great deal of distress. By looking at the London Care Record we could check her records and found that many years ago she had suffered a significant emotional trauma that explained her current behaviour. Thanks to this we were able to find an effective way to calm her down and manage a very difficult situation while also planning the best care for her moving forwards.”
Michael Armstrong, Managing Director Havering Care Homes, said:
“When we are waiting on medication to be delivered, we no longer need to call the pharmacy and then the GP to establish if the prescription has been raised by the GP and sent to the pharmacist. We can now see this information automatically in the London Care Record saving my team a lot of time which can now be better spent with our residents.”
Ronniel Alarilla, Registered Manager Heathlands Care Home, said:
“Recently one of our residents had to be admitted to hospital. Thanks to the London Care Record we could see the patient summaries from both the London Ambulance Service and Emergency Department so could check their condition which gave the team peace of mind. Crucially it also gave us the information we need to effectively plan their care when they return to the home.”
Harpreet Shergill, NHS London Digital Health & Care Lead, said:
“It is great to hear how the London Care Record is already making a difference in care homes – for both residents and staff. We will continue to closely monitor its use in our pilot care homes as we plan to roll this our more widely across the Capital to support even more staff provide the best possible care for their residents.”
This pilot programme is a partnership between OneLondon, the NHS Regional Care Home team and Person Centred Software – a social care electronic patient record provider. It involves 28 care homes across North East London, North West London and South West London.
Following a detailed evaluation, we will plan how to roll this out more widely across London to support more care home staff provide the most effective care possible to their residents.
Find out more about the London Care Record here.