Seven hospital trusts will receive funding to introduce digital records and e-prescribing to benefit healthcare staff and patients.
The trusts will receive a share of £8.7m to roll out the digital systems which have already been implemented in 130 NHS trusts to date. The funding is part of a £78m investment to deliver the NHS Long Term Plan.
The new technology will help the NHS to access patient history and prescribe medication digitally, which can reduce errors by up to 30%.
NHS trusts will now be able to access potentially lifesaving information on prescribed medicines and patient history much faster, and build a more complete, single electronic patient record, which reduces duplication of information-gathering, saves staff time, and can reduce medication errors by up to 30%.
Speaking at an Imperial College London event on World Patient Safety Day, Minister for Patient Safety, Nadine Dorries, said: “World Patient Safety Day this year comes at a more important time than ever, with healthcare systems and workers across the world tested like never before. In my role I have seen first-hand the dedication and care demonstrated by so many of my colleagues in the NHS and this year’s theme of health worker safety is a vital one.
“Today I am also pleased to announce the seven trusts receiving a share of £8.7m to help eliminate paper prescriptions. This will not only help reduce potentially deadly medication errors but save our hardworking staff valuable time.”
Increasing nurses in the UK
The Government is also working to strengthen the NHS workforce and train 50,000 new nurses, which will help to minimise workload pressures and ensure NHS services are appropriately staffed.
Following this year’s A level results, over 25,750 applicants have been placed on nursing and midwifery courses, an increase of 22% on the same time last year.
The Minister for Patient Safety will also be paying a virtual visit to University Hospital Southampton alongside NHS England’s National Patient Safety Director Dr Aidan Fowler to hear about how they are protecting their hospital staff and patients during the coronavirus pandemic.
National Director of Patient Safety Dr Aidan Fowler said: “World Patient Safety Day is an important opportunity to reflect on the vital work that goes on across the NHS to protect patients from harm, and to thank staff for their efforts to keep patients safe.
“Patient safety is of paramount importance and is something we are continuously looking at ways to improve, whether through new technology, such as the introduction of electronic prescribing, or by building a safety culture where all NHS staff feel supported and safe to speak up.”