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In brief …. 3 March 2016



New cancer app for Scotland

A new app has been launched by the Scottish Centre for Enabling Technologies to help GPS, pharmacists and other healthcare professionals with referrals of patients suspected of having cancer. It was commissioned by the Scottish Government and is available through Apple and Google app stores.

It features a quick reference guide that can be updated in a Wi-Fi zone and used offline. It also includes information on symptoms and signs and images of what to look for.

Health Secretary Shona Robison said: “This app, which has been developed in partnership with health professionals and patients, will make it easier and quicker for doctors, pharmacists and senior nurses to access information on referral for those suspected of having cancer.”

Edesix wins PSNI body video deal

The Police Service of Northern Ireland has chosen Edesix as supplier of body worn video, as part of a programme to roll out the use of the technology across its area. This follows a pilot running since 2014 in one of the eight policing districts.

Mark Hamilton, assistant chief constable of the service, said the pilot confirmed the value of video evidence from the cameras, leading to the submission of a business case to the Department of Justice. This led to the allocation of funds, and Edesix will help to introduce the technology around Northern Ireland on a phased basis.

Hull coroner turns to Civica

Hull City Council has entered a partnership with Civica to modernise the workings of its Coroner's Office.

It will involve doctors being able to submit reports of deaths into the system in real time, replacing the need to do so over the phone. Document and form production will be automated and the Coroner's Office will receive data to monitor workloads and perform analysis. Long term it plans to move to a paperless environment.

ONS unveils new website

The Office of National Statistics has launched a new website including a number of features for users to make more of its information.

It includes more than 35,000 time series that can be used to make customisable charts, and a tool for selecting and downloading up to 50 to create bespoke datasets. There is also an enhanced search function, and nearly 150,000 redirects to ensure users can find existing content.

The site has been in beta since July of last year and has had feedback from more than 600 individuals and 80 organisations. Further development is planned.

Socitm urges IG Toolkit adoption

Public sector IT association Socitm has encouraged local authorities to take up use of the IG Toolkit – an online system that enables organisations to assess themselves against information governance requirements – as part of the move towards information sharing between health and social care agencies.

It also said they should take a single approach towards information governance across all departments.

Socitm made the call in a new briefing paper on joining up health and social care. It has also identified the need for more work in various areas, such as changes to training, the provision of information on cyber security, and a review of the IG Toolkit for large, complex organisations.

Sheffield does Educater deal

Sheffield City Council has partnered with tracking and assessment provider Educatere to develop a system to help schools manage pupil assessment information. Named STATonline, it is claimed to be the only system to offer both electronic recording for teachers and analysis for leaders.

  1. The content and range of options has been produced by the school leaders who created the STAT Sheffield assessment materials, with the functionality and intuitive design developed by the Bett Futures 2015 cohort and Educater's designers. The system integrates with leading management information systems such as Capita SIMs, RM Integris and Facility CMIS, and is web based, allowing access to data from anywhere.

Stephen Betts, leader of the STAT Project in Sheffield, commented: "STATonline enables teachers to record assessment information quickly and has a direct impact on the way they plan children's learning. It enables leaders to analyse attainment and progress efficiently, both to understand the needs of their school and to report to others.”

New analytics for Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals

Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has commenced deployment of a new analytics capability fropm Connexica. The CXAIR system will provide senior doctors, nurses and managerial staff across the trust with the ability to generate instant reports and dig into details on clinical activity, patient discharge times, A&E performance and a range of other clinical and business areas.

Applications to be used early include an A&E dashboard, an application to examine discharge rates in the hospital, and a tool to monitor the results of major investments.

Alec Dearden, head of information services at the trust, said: “Staff throughout the hospital will no longer need to request reports from the information team. Self-service analytics, available through CXAIR, will allow people to immediately see where they need to take action.”

Birmingham launches smart city programmes

Innovation Birmingham has opened its application process for the Serendip Smart Cities Incubator programme, which will provide office space and support for companies working in the field. It will involve work on four 'quarters': digital health, intelligent mobility, the internet of things and an additional incubator to be delivered by Innovation Birmingham.

Dr David Hardman, chief executive of Innovation Birmingham, said: “This challenge-led programme will provide a fantastic opportunity for UK start-ups to work directly with established commercial partners and benefit from their longevity and expertise.”

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