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NHS England has chosen an additional two areas to become local health and care record exemplars (LHCRE).
Yorkshire and the Humber (covering West Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, North Yorkshire and Humberside) and Thames Valley and Surrey (covering Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Surrey) will join the initial three exemplars announced last month.
Together, the five exemplars will cover 23.5 million people – over 40% of the population of England.
Each LHCRE will receive up to £7.5m over two years to implement an electronic shared local health and care record.
What is an LHCRE?
An LHCRE is made up of one or more sustainability transformation partnerships.
Each LHCRE will implement an electronics shared local health and care record, designed to give health and care professionals faster and improved access to essential information about the people they are caring for.
At the moment, GPs and other care professionals often come up against obstacles in accessing vital patient information quickly if it is stored in another part of the health service ‘sometimes having to rely on post or fax instead’, according to NHS England.
The LHCREs are designed to support local areas that are already adopting best practice in collecting, protecting and ethically using health and care data.
‘World leading position’
NHS England national director of operations and information Matthew Swindells believes the LHCRE programme ‘will take the NHS to a world leading position in using information technology to join up services, reduce errors, speed the adoption of new innovations, and give patients control over their own care’.
He added: ‘The Exemplars will be our trailblazers for that transformation.’
Dr Simon Eccles, chief clinical information officer for Health and Care, said:
‘These new local systems will ensure appropriate staff can access information, from patient histories to previous test results and care plans. [It] will not only improve the individual care we are able to offer but, in some instances, could save lives.’