Nursing staff at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust have monitored more than one million patient vital signs using the latest hi-tec equipment.
The VitalPAC system was introduced at the Trust’s three hospital sites – Pinderfields, Pontefract and Dewsbury – last year and is already helping improve patient safety.
VitalPAC is a software system that helps monitor the condition of hospital patients, ensuring deteriorating patients are quickly identified and treated. Nursing staff use hand-held devices to record seven routine observations.
The system’s software immediately analyses a patient’s results for blood pressure, pulse, temperature and other vital signs and calculates an early warning score to help the nursing staff make crucial clinical decisions and summon timely and appropriate help.
It has proved so effective that its implementation has now been nominated for a National Patient Safety Agency Award.
Sister Kirstie McEnhill, VitalPAC Clinical Lead Nurse at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “The VitalPAC system is already delivering a new level of efficiency across the Trust and is enabling far faster identification and treatment of patients whose condition is deteriorating. Consultants are able to prioritise which patients to review first in order of clinical urgency, contributing to better outcomes for these patients.
“It is also an effective system for staff to use as it removes the need for paper charts.”
All readings on VitalPAC are automatically sent wirelessly to a central service. This means that the data can be reviewed on the hospital PCs, tablets or other hand-held devices by any clinician anywhere in the hospital.
Sister McEnhill added: “We are working to expand this system further with the introduction of a version of the system for Doctors. This will enable them to see a wider range of alerts and will enable further identification of patients who are either deteriorating or who are at risk of deteriorating and again will boost patient safety.”
The winners of the National Patient Safety Agency Award will be announced next month.