Health is a valued and demanded concept by all of us for the two main promises it brings: the length of life and its quality. Healthcare provision has always been an important keystone of the nation’s social fabric. No two nations are alike when comparing their healthcare systems in terms of service delivery, financial engagement, data collecting, and processing, etc. Still, they all work towards one common interest – providing patients with safe and effective healthcare.
Oxford University Hospitals – the “knowledge is power” operation
Oxford University Hospitals (OUH) is one of the largest hospital-teaching trusts in the UK, with an international reputation for the excellence of its services. Their vision for a digital hospital was to have their patients’ medical history and care requirements available online in real-time and easily shared between all tangent stakeholders. Among other reasons, for clinically auditing parts of in-house processes.
Clinical audits are a uniform way to find whether the provided healthcare is in line with the standards, and they show a clear path towards the possible advancements in the process. But the main prerequisite needed is a solid basis of digitized data, compiled in a safe and trustworthy way.
Since 2016, OUH has been digitizing data from paper trails, and the results are outstanding – a vast amount of time saved on administration as automatization took over most processes, and more compact and longitudinal patient records with fewer errors due to duplicated entries. These advantages considerably improved audit trails from a clinical perspective and the benefits associated with the clinical audit. Some audits could not previously be undertaken at all.
Nonetheless, it was the biggest operational change they have ever undertaken – continuous system training put the staff under considerable strain.
Healthcare professionals are not administrators, nor should they be
Better use of trustworthy data and information technology has the power to improve health, transform the quality and reduce the cost of health and care services. It can decrease the administrative burden for care professionals and support the development of new medicines and treatments.
But what if there was a way to protect the data’s integrity and harness the power of compiled patients’ records in an even faster, less costly, and more intuitive way?
Authtrail proves to be a solution to do just that. By employing blockchain technology, Authtrail can guarantee immutability, easy sharing and traceability of data at all levels – it ensures integrity of clinical data while increasing performance and decreasing transaction costs.
In the case of OUH, the use of Authtrail on top of the existing digital data systems they employ now would immensely boost the quality of the healthcare provided for patients. How?
- Clinical and management audits can become quicker, easier, more comprehensive, and more frequent.
- As the amount of trustworthy clinical data increases with time, the audit results will become more accurate and precise, suggesting more and more improvements to apply.
- Time saved by using fast and easy-to-use tools will allow healthcare professionals to focus on their performance and not on the patient tracking itself.
The application of clinical audits should become more widely spread to promote its impact in the healthcare industry. Together with other quality improvements, it should become part of the expertise of each healthcare provider or at least a clear point of differentiation for the ones who benefit from investing in such tools.