Life-threatening kidney injuries to be prevented by pioneering NHS trust in collaboration with Patientrack
Western Sussex Hospitals wins national competition with Patientrack
Sussex, UK – 19th August 2014: Acute kidney injuries that contribute to tens of thousands of deaths in England every year could soon be avoided due to the launch of a ground-breaking project at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the support of Patientrack, a real-time patient vital signs, early warning and alerting system.
The project, which is being funded after winning a national competition by the Department of Health and Small Business Research Initiative, is to go live at the trust later this summer. Doctors and nurses will then be able to identify patients at risk of acute kidney injury (AKI), a devastating condition that contributes to more than 60,000 deaths across England every year.
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By using Patientrack, the trust will be able to put into practice a predictive model developed by its pioneering researchers as the system will automatically alert clinical staff to those patients that either have AKI, and importantly, those likely to develop it.
AKI affects as many as one in five emergency admission patients and has been estimated to cost the NHS as much as £620m per annum – more than lung and skin cancer combined.
Delays in medical staff recognising the condition has also traditionally caused further problems. But clinicians will soon be able to intervene much earlier, with the ability to both identify patients who already have AKI when they arrive at hospital and the ability to predict which patients are at greatest risk of developing the condition whilst in their care.
Dr Lui Forni, the consultant renal physician leading the initiative at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Patientrack gives us the ability to flag up which patients are at risk of acute kidney injury almost from the moment they walk through the door. We can see which patients are at risk from the first set of observations we take.
“Effectively it is an intelligent real-time technology that should systemically improve the care of patients. It will prevent and it will help to improve the management of people who come in with AKI.”
The system will capture physiological data directly from the patient’s bedside and will interrogate data from other systems, such as the hospital’s Patient Administration System, also taking into account important information such as blood chemistry results. It will then use the trust’s scoring algorithm to identify every patient with identifiable acute kidney injury that comes into hospital.
After identifying and predicting AKI problems, Patientrack will also be used to manage patients. Those who already have the condition will be highlighted with a red flag so they can hopefully be given appropriate treatment by staff. Those at risk of the condition will be given an amber flag and the system will alert junior doctors to carry out necessary actions to prevent AKI, which senior doctors can then check.
“Having a system where you can identify early and intervene should make a considerable difference,” added Dr Forni, who is also the chair of the AKI section of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine (ESICM).
“Ultimately, if we can identify people and do something about it, even if we can reduce incidents of hospital acquired acute kidney injury by 50 per cent, then that would be a dramatic improvement and should translate to improved patient outcomes.”
The project was identified as one of 14 pioneering solutions to become eligible for a share of the £3.6m fund, which has been managed by the National Institute for Health Research Devices for Dignity Healthcare Technology Co-operative. The fund is intended to address the life-changing effects of kidney failure.
Donald Kennedy, managing director at Patientrack, said: “This is a great example of the NHS leading the world in patient safety. Patientrack is seeing a growing appetite within the NHS to improve safety for patients and save lives through innovative, evidence-based technology. It is a welcome opportunity to be part of this leading-edge collaboration between the NHS and a UK SME.”
After initial use at hospitals in Western Sussex, it is hoped that the system will be adopted across the NHS to reduce incidents of AKI more widely.
Notes to editors
About Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
On 1 July, 2013, Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust became Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. The milestone was reached just over four years after the trust was formed, on 1 April, 2009, following the merger of the Royal West Sussex NHS Trust, which served the population in the Chichester area, and the Worthing and Southlands NHS Trust, serving people living around Worthing and Shoreham-by-Sea.
The trust serves a population of approximately 450,000 people, providing a full range of acute hospital services. There are three principal sites: St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester; Worthing Hospital, and Southlands Hospital in Shoreham-by-Sea. Trust staff also provide a range of services in other community settings, including Bognor War Memorial Hospital, Crawley Hospital, health centres and GP surgeries.
The trust has approximately 900 inpatient beds. The two main acute sites are St. Richard’s and Worthing hospitals, where patients can access accident and emergency services, acute medical care, maternity and children’s services and a range of surgical specialties. Southlands Hospital offers patients a range of day case procedures, diagnostic and outpatient appointments, and will be developed as a centre for ambulatory care, and also ophthalmology.
Trust website: www.westernsussexhospitals.nhs.uk
Patientrack helps hospitals deliver safer care – which is also more cost-effective care – by ensuring observation and assessment protocols are carried out correctly and consistently, and by automatically calculating early warning scores and alerting clinicians when interventions are needed. Through early identification of deteriorating patients, and the promoting of necessary assessments, Patientrack helps hospitals meet national and local targets for improvements in patient safety, improving patient outcomes and supporting frontline staff, while at the same time cutting costs. Patientrack was developed in conjunction with clinicians and nurses and its effectiveness in delivering both patient safety and cost improvements has been proven in a peer-reviewed clinical trial at Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
About the NIHR Devices for Dignity Healthcare Technology Co-operative
The National Institute for Health Research Devices for Dignity (D4D) Healthcare Technology Co-operative (NIHR Devices for Dignity HTC) is a National initiative, hosted by Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust It works with people, clinical and healthcare staff, inventors, charities, industry and academics – bringing real solutions to areas of clinical and patient need in assistive and rehabilitative technologies, urinary continence management and renal technologies.
D4D’s Renal Technologies theme aims to develop systems, devices and services to assist people with renal conditions to maintain their independence.
Projects within the scope of the Renal Technologies area focus on:
- Preserving dignity and promoting independence and quality of life for people suffering kidney diseases
- Improving patient access to home dialysis
- Improving patient experience and rehabilitation
- Enabling early diagnosis and prevention of kidney disease
For further information contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.devicesfordignity.org.uk.
The Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI), delivered through the Technology Strategy Board, is a well established process to connect public sector challenges with innovative ideas from industry, supporting companies to generate economic growth and enabling improvement in achieving government objectives.
Matthew D’Arcy, Highland Marketing on behalf of Patientrack
Phone: +44 (0)1877 339922