eMeds on a roll at a record six sites

eMeds team winning award
15 December 2015

eHealth NSW's eMeds Program is deep into delivery stage at one of the state's largest hospitals, Prince of Wales at Randwick, with the first stages of its highly anticipated ‘go-live’ proving to be successful and smooth.

The eMeds Program team's efforts are attracting high-profile attention, with NSW Health Minister Jillian Skinner presenting the state's top health award for innovation to Sydney Local Health District for the electronic medication management system eHealth NSW helped it to implement at Concord Repatriation General Hospital.

At the 17th annual NSW Health Awards on 2 November, Minister Skinner personally selected Concord's roll-out of eMeds as the ‘stand-out’ winner from 48 finalists represented in 11 categories.

“The win is a fantastic acknowledgement of our eMeds Program team's collaboration with Sydney LHD,” said eHealth NSW Acting Chief Executive and Chief Information Officer Dr Zoran Bolevich.

“This project offers a perfect example of how, in partnership with our LHDs, we are delivering innovative solutions that enable excellent healthcare through delivery of quality information where and when it is needed.”

With roll-out of eMeds at Concord now complete, the team charged with implementing electronic medication management across NSW has turned its attention to another six sites.

The 700-bed Prince of Wales Hospital (PoW) is among them, beginning with two of its aged-care wards before moving into cardiac. Roll-out to the rest of PoW, one of NSW's major teaching hospitals, is continuing.

Clinicians have greeted the roll-out enthusiastically, with Dr Andrew Hugman, Emergency Physician at PoW and the clinical lead for the hospital's eMEDS project, saying he was excited about electronic medication management as “it will make it much faster and safer to do our job”.

“This is a stepping stone to more and more integration of technology in medicine,” he said. “Drug interaction alerts, clinical decision rules, duplicate dosing warnings – all these sorts of things are exciting as they help to make things safer for patients.”

Go-lives commenced at Maitland Hospital in November and The Children's Hospital at Westmead is preparing for its implementation of eMeds in 2016. eMeds projects are also underway at Royal Prince Alfred and Blacktown Hospitals, and will soon commence at sites in the Northern Sydney and Central Coast LHDs.

eHealth NSW's eMeds Program Manager Jonathan Di Michiel said the successful implementations were the result of a lot of hard work over the past two years.

“Reaching such a significant phase of delivery has taken a lot of time, patience and attention to detail, and I salute our team for the incredible job they're doing,” he said.

Jonathan said the eMeds Program was “all about implementing sustainable and integrated systems and processes that enhance patient safety and health outcomes in hospitals in NSW”.

“That’s the thing about eMeds – it has never been a hard sell,” he said. “Everyone has welcomed it because they understand the benefits it will bring.”

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