InterSystems, a global leader in software for connected care, today announced that NHS Wales has successfully completed the first phase of the national roll out of InterSystems TrakCare® Lab, a comprehensive, multidisciplinary laboratory information management system (LIMS). The first phase of the implementation, covering all four labs in the Hywel Dda Health Board, is a major step in one of the largest and most complex pathology modernisation programmes in the western health economy.
NHS Wales chose TrakCare Lab, part of the InterSystems TrakCare unified healthcare information system, as the foundation for its national pathology programme to connect 18 laboratories in six Health Boards across Wales. TrakCare Lab is designed to support modern laboratories that provide consolidated, comprehensive pathology services. The programme will replace eight different laboratory systems with one TrakCare Lab system, enabling more than 21 million tests per year to be managed by one system for the population of Wales. It is an integral part of the One Wales initiative to provide a fully integrated healthcare record across the whole of Wales.
All four Hywel Dda implementations ran smoothly with no downtime. Withybush General Hospital was the first to go live on the 9th September 2013, followed by Glangwili General Hospital and Prince Philip Hospital on the 14th October 2013. The Bronglais General Hospital laboratory, which went live on the 3rd December 2013, completed the blood sciences and microbiology rollouts.
The new LIMS deployment is a collaboration among the Pathology Service, the Pathology Modernisation Agenda for Wales, and the NHS Wales Informatics Service (NWIS). The standardisation of pathology test sets will enable consistent diagnostic services across Wales and will reduce the number of unnecessary duplicate or repeat tests, saving time and money. When fully implemented and combined with other national developments in Wales the new LIMS will support key government initiatives to deliver high quality services to patients within the Principality.
The implementation of TrakCare Lab provides a number of benefits:
Better services for patients by providing a single pathology record accessible anywhere the information is needed, reducing the number of diagnostic tests required and improving safety
Increased efficiency and effectiveness of care for healthcare professionals by enabling access to a common, up-to-date diagnostic record for more effective treatment decisions
Improved pathology services through a reduction in duplicate and repeat testing, as well as the increased ability to share workload across the service
Ease of user adoption as a result of an implementation methodology that ensured the more robust system could be deployed with minimal impact on normal laboratory activities
Dr. Mike Simmons, Public Health Wales Microbiology Consultant for Hywel Dda and one of the first to use the new system, commented, “We are already seeing many benefits in Hywel Dda, including improved clinical outputs from the microbiology labs, which are having a very positive benefit in respect to patient care.”
“InterSystems is delighted that NWIS chose TrakCare Lab as the foundation for the Welsh national laboratory pathology modernisation programme,” said Paul Grabscheid, Vice President of Strategic Planning at InterSystems. “This pioneering programme is large and complex, and TrakCare Lab is an advanced technology that enables breakthroughs.”
“We are very familiar with the requirements and intricacies of a national laboratory programme of this kind,” he added. “In South Africa, for example, TrakCare Lab underpins the national laboratory service for the management of pandemics and chronic illnesses. This supports approximately 38 million uninsured people through more than 250 laboratories nationwide – an experience we can draw upon for Wales. With the successful Hywel Dda deployment, our focus is to ensure that the remaining Health Boards go live with equal success. We will continue to work with NWIS and the local laboratory staffs to complete this visionary and valuable pathology programme.”
The Welsh LIMS national laboratory pathology modernisation programme is planned for completion during 2014. The new LIMS will also service national specialist services including Cervical Cytology, Welsh Blood Service, Public Health Wales for Microbiology, and Infection Control Services.