Doing the Rounds: Pocket Vision Equips GPs for productive home visits and more flexible, mobile care

From: In Practice Systems
Published: Mon May 09 2005

Pocket Vision (PV) is the portable version of the widely used GP clinical System, Vision from In Practice Systems and is used by about 400 of the 2000+ Vision practices in the UK. PV enables access via a PDA or laptop to the full patient medical record and is fully integrated with the Vision system.

How the system is used at the Surgery

PV is used by the four partners and the Registrar at the Sutton Manor Surgery during house calls. They use the system to access the patient’s medical history, therapy and test results when out of the main surgery, and any changes made on the PDA are uploaded to the main database when the GP returns to the surgery.

Benefits of using Pocket Vision

a) Improving the working lives of staff
PV is a labour saving device. In the past, before a home visit, surgery staff would print off the patient’s latest computerised records. GPs would then take notes by hand, and update the Vision system on their return. Using PV, the GP simply updates the medical record during the home visit, and this is synchronised on return to base.

b) Enhancing patient services
PV offers doctors full access to patient records and clinical data. The GPs at Sutton Manor Surgery are therefore able to access vital clinical information when outside the practice, thus improving patient safety and enabling an accurate and speedy diagnosis and benefiting the patient with more timely management programmes for their problems.

The partners found that on some visits, for example at nursing homes, it was not unusual for the doctor to be asked to see several patients during the course of one visit. In the past, the doctor would not have access to their records, but with PV, patient safety is enhanced with the immediate access to patient medical records. Patients often require a prescription of their medication while the doctor is there. PV enables the doctor to check the name of the drug, its dose, quantity and form, thus avoiding potential errors.

c) Increasing the efficiency of the surgery
PV enables the GP to respond out of hours, when asked for information from the coroner about a sudden death, or from out-of-hour's doctors with a question about the patient’s history or medication.

Using PV has reduced the number of revisits and subsequent telephone calls to patients due to the doctor not having access to records at the time of consultation.

PV downloads the current practice dataset from Vision, ensuring GPs have access to the latest patient information. Any notes or action taken by the GP on the visit are then automatically uploaded from PDA to the server when the portable device running Pocket Vision is connected to the practice system, ensuring the most up-to-date information is always available.

Paul Mitchell of the Sutton Manor Surgery: "PV is allowing the surgery to move towards becoming a paperless practice, and as the user interface is the same as the main Vision system, it is easy to use and very little training is required."
Company: In Practice Systems
Contact Name: Luke Ford
Contact Email:
Contact Phone: 01625 511966

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