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Published July 2020
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Case Study

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust uses GS1 barcode data to save staff time and keep families informed

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Key Results

A decrease in the number of phone calls between wards and departments

More accurate real-time data available for patients’ relatives and carers

The problem

The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (LTHT) had a manual, largely paper-based, Patient Administration System (PAS).

LTHT covers seven hospitals across five sites and staff treat over 1.1 million patients a year. As such, the archaic PAS simply could not cope.

Real-time patient data was impossible to access, meaning doctors’ time was wasted locating patients. More importantly, patients’ loved ones and relatives couldn’t get up-to-date information when they asked for it.

The solution

The trust Informatics team developed a mobile app which scans the patient’s Global Service Relation Number (located as a barcode on the patient’s wristband), opening up their Electronic Patient Record instantly.

Following this, a second barcode reading screen opens. A simple scan of the Scan4Safety barcode on the wall containing the unique Global Location Number (GLN) updates the system with the patient’s whereabouts.

The collation of these two identifiers means that clinical staff can see inpatient data and location at any time.

"At the outset of Scan4Safety, the Deputy Chief Medical Office expressed a wish to be able to track the location of patients across the organisation. The use of GLN and GLN Extensions has made this vision a reality. It provides increased safety and reassurance for our patients. "

Mark Songhurst (Work Stream Lead, GLN)

The results

Following these changes, LTHT has already seen a decrease in the number of telephone calls between inpatient wards and departments. Staff can quickly check a patient’s whereabouts, knowing that the information is accurate.

Now, if a patient’s relative or carer calls, staff can give answers immediately rather than having to put people on hold or call them back.

It saves time and it’s better for the peace of mind of the patient’s family.

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