PA Consulting’s health transformation expert, Andrew Jaminson, discusses PA's work with Belfast Health and Social Care Trust and Microsoft to reimagine patient care during COVID-19.
This pandemic has changed every single aspect of our lives and our healthcare system is no different.
The article discusses how, with the pandemic and the introduction of social-distancing, remote working and extended lockdowns, health and social care workers had to adapt how they complete their everyday tasks to keep vital services running.
Belfast Trust is the largest integrated health and social care trust in the United Kingdom, employing 23,000 people who help treat over 340,000 patients across more than 100 hospital and facilities in Northern Ireland. When COVID-19 hit last March, they realised their everyday processes would have to change.
Thankfully, Belfast Trust had begun a cloud-first digital transformation back in 2018. During that year they started implementing Microsoft 365 across the organisation and trialling new innovative ways of working, like using Microsoft Teams for virtual consultations.
With strict social distancing rules now in place, Belfast Trust needed to help support patients remotely and continue providing face-to-face care in a secure way.
Belfast Trust worked with Microsoft and PA Consulting to evolve this into a more scalable solution that is integrated through the Trust’s Microsoft 365 platform, including automations to collect patient information and record consultations, with all data securely stored in the hospitals Electronic Patient Record (EPR) system.
Andrew says: “Starting with a focus on patient care, the work we carried out with Belfast Health and Social Care Trust provides a compelling example of how using the right technology in the right way can have a significant positive and sustainable impact on the delivery of that care.
“In addition to providing an alternative way for care to continue from a distance during COVID-19, it has set a framework to provide service users with additional choice and a better experience, setting new service expectations for both patients and clinicians, in a way which will last for many years to come.”