Derby Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has become the latest trust to join EMRAD – a radiology consortium that allows hospitals across the East Midlands to share images.
The trust’s board approved the decision on January 16 and the official documentation was signed this week.
It means that within the next six months images from Derby and Burton hospitals will be able to be shared easily across the region.
Being a member of the EMRAD consortium helps improve decision-making. The shared governance and commitment to work together, along with a software solution from GE, helps experts at each of the eight hospitals to view images instantly on their computer, regardless of where the patient is being treated.
Dr Nigel Sturrock, executive medical director for Derby Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “This will ensure timely decision-making by the clinical teams in different hospitals to improve the care of our patients who move between different trusts in the region.
“Derby Teaching Hospitals will continue to use its current radiology picture archiving and communication system, but joining the consortium will allow clinicians to access the complete radiology imaging record for their patients, including scans, reports and clinical opinions, regardless of which hospital they were performed at.”
The trusts are using the GE Healthcare Cross Enterprise Reporting tool, which is designed to enable fluid sharing of information and workload to optimise care quality within a region.
Dr Adam Thomas, consultant radiologist at the Queens Medical Centre in Nottingham, said: “The Cross Enterprise Reporting tool enables me to report on studies from King’s Mill or Lincoln from my desk in Nottingham.
“I can access the entire patient record including imaging exams independent from where they were taken.
“Provision of second opinions acquired in Derby will be much easier and quicker now they are joining the consortium.”
Dr Tim Taylor, medical director of EMRAD, added: “This is genuinely-innovative technology and has the potential to improve patient care, bringing it closer to home and enabling patients to be treated in a more-timely manner.”
The other EMRAD consortium members are: Burton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Kettering General Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust, and United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust.
EMRAD is part of the NHS Acute Care Collaboration Vanguard programme in which 13 entities nationwide are developing ways in which NHS trusts can work together on innovations to improve clinical and financial viability.