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New electronic system to identify complex infection problems developed by pharmacist

An electronic system that helps identify patients with complex infection problems for early referral to a consultant microbiologist has been developed by Kieran Hand, consultant pharmacist for anti-infectives at Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Dr Hand secured funding from the South Central Strategic Health Authority last year and worked with software developers at Scorpio Information Systems (now a division of Ascribe) to develop a computerised referral system to replace the paper-based one.

The new system, which is incorporated into the trust’s main clinical information system eQuest, became fully operational in October 2008.

Dr Hand said: “This is the first fully operational system of its kind in the UK and will support high quality care of patients with infections throughout the trust.

“With recommendations from the ward round now reported on eQuest, we are able to provide an effective means of communication to the ward pharmacist and doctors looking after the patient.”

The system also has a reporting function that provides information on the number and types of referrals in each specialty in order to guide workforce planning and identify areas for clinical training.

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal URI: 10043875

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