Brighton & Sussex trust improves patient care visibility


Brighton & Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust installs electronic bed management system from Stone Group

Brighton & Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust (BSUH) in partnership with Stone Group has completed the installation of a new electronic bed management system as part of improvements to ward efficiency and patient care throughout the hospitals.

The project involved the installation of around 70 Samsung Large Format Display (LFD) monitors with touch-screen capability across all inpatient wards through the trust’s two sites in Brighton and Haywards Heath, incorporating a total of six hospitals.

The organisation decided to digitise its bed management system in order to improve patient flow and patient care and therefore introduce more efficiencies. The Samsung LFD interactive screens allow teams to focus work where needed, for example if a bed is required staff can see when the next bed is due and what is outstanding to make it available. They also use a traffic light coding system that allows all staff coming onto the ward, such as a physiotherapist, to quickly and clearly see which patient requires their assessment and where they can be found. In addition, this same information can be accessed remotely on a desktop by the same physiotherapist while on another ward or in their own department.

For many years the hospital operated two systems for patient management: a handwritten dry-wipe board and an electronic desktop programme. These systems were difficult to keep updated in real-time and required valuable time to keep aligned with one another, causing delays to patient discharge and progression throughout the hospitals. As a result, BSUH has reduced timeliness of data entry by more than 500% compared to the old method of using handwritten dry-wipe boards.

“We are delighted with the simplicity, visibility and tidiness of the interactive displays,” said Niki Porter, operational service manager for clinical administration at the trust. “We needed to increase visibility of patient information and ensure the same information was visible on every desktop throughout the trust in order to increase efficiencies in each ward and make decision-making easier and quicker. It is helping our nurses to focus on what is crucial. While the administrative role is key, our nurses have trained so hard for so long to be able to deliver the standards of care that our patients expect.”

Since introducing the new bed management system, the timeliness report – calculated between the time a patient physically moves and time entered on system – immediately brought the average per week down by more than 500%, taking 7-9 minutes in comparison to the previous three days. This can be attributed to the visibility of the interactive screens and the ‘drag and drop to discharge’ functionality.

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The installation was completed in three weeks, broken up by a week for staff training. The system is used by nurses on a daily basis as well as doctors and multi-disciplinary teams including physiotherapists, dieticians, occupational health therapists and social workers.