First iPads distributed as ePCR project picks up pace


Staff in north and south Bedfordshire have become the first to receive brand new iPads as part of a multi-million pound project to replace our electronic patient care record (ePCR) and further improve the quality and safety of the services we are able to provide.

Trainers who attended a train the trainer session on 19 January have already received their devices, with super users and frontline staff to follow next. Once they have been issued with a device, they will be able to take part in ePCR e-learning sessions and attend virtual classrooms in preparation for the system going live on 16 March.

Over the next six months, every frontline member of staff will be issued with an iPad so that they can access the new ePCR system quickly and easily while on the road. Once the technology is fully up and running, it will:

  • Provide crews with the patient’s history and full record, including details of previous ambulance call outs, GP and hospital attendances, as well as vital information about any medications they are taking, recent test results and allergies they may have.
  • Allow staff to make real-time referrals to agencies such as social care and child protection. This will be expanded in the future to give crews access to an extensive directory of services so that they can signpost the patient to alternative pathways of care where appropriate, such as pharmacists or the voluntary or third sector.
  • Give crews immediate access to the clinical advice line and other guidance, as well as allowing them to complete mandatory training while on the road and check emails, in turn helping them stay in touch with colleagues.
  • Enable us to share information easily and securely with other healthcare partners while alerting hospital staff when patients are being brought in so that we can hand over quickly and efficiently.

The Siren Nova app will be pre-installed on the iPads, while the following apps and shortcuts will also be added to improve access to information and help us provide better patient care: 

  • Link to NICE UK
  • Link to CKSNICE UK
  • BNF
  • JRCALC/Clinical Manual
  • Mersey Burns
  • MD Calc
  • Fast ECG
  • MiDos
  • Toxbase
  • Attend Anywhere
  • Office 365
  • Helpdesk
  • GRS
  • Medusa Siren
  • News2
  • iResus
  • What3Words
  • WAZE (sat nav)
  • Teams
  • Trust intranet
  • Google Maps
  • Evolve
  • OS Locate
  • NHS safeguarding app
  • BSL (British sign language)

HART staff will also receive extra apps and shortcuts related to their role.

The project has been funded with £5m from NHSX, which has been matched by EEAST. Over the next ten years, we have pledged to increase this investment by an additional £15m to further refine the technology so that it interacts fully with all of the different computer systems used by acute hospitals across the east of England.


Published 28th January 2021