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Take a look at a selection of our recent media coverage:

Trial results could benefit AF patients

12th November 2010

Positive results from a sub-group analysis of the landmark Randomised Evaluation of Long-Term Anticoagulant Therapy (RE-LY®) trial were published this week (9 November) in the Lancet Neurology.

The RE-LY® trial is the largest atrial fibrillation (AF) outcomes trial ever completed, with 18,113 patients in 44 countries worldwide.

The new findings show that AF patients with previous stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) may benefit substantially from treatment with dabigatran etexilate.

The new sub-group analysis from RE-LY® included 3,623 AF patients who had suffered a stroke or TIA before enrollment into the trial.

The results of the sub-group analysis were consistent with the overall trial results for the major efficacy and safety outcomes.

This was confirmed by an interaction analysis which showed that results in patients with previous stroke or TIA were consistent with the overall results found in the RE-LY® trial.

The 150 mg dose of dabigatran etexilate provided a substantial 25% reduction in relative risk compared with well controlled warfarin in the combined endpoint of stroke and systemic embolism in the sub-group of patients with previous stroke or TIA in line with the results of the main RE-LY® trial.

However, due to the five fold smaller sample size of this subpopulation compared to RE-LY®, this difference did not reach statistical significance.

Impressively, both doses (110 mg BID and 150 mg BID) also demonstrated significant reductions in intracranial bleeds versus well controlled warfarin.

These findings support the overall striking results of RE-LY® in the prevention of stroke and systemic embolism of dabigatran etexilate within a patient sub-group who are at 2.5 times increased risk compared with a typical AF patient without previous stroke or TIA, who themselves are already at five times increased risk.

Based on the convincing results of RE-LY®, dabigatran etexilate was approved in the USA for stroke risk reduction in patients with non-valvular AF and in Canada for the prevention of stroke and systemic embolism in patients with AF for whom anticoagulation is appropriate.

New data from the RE-LY®trial and dabigatran etexilate will be available at this year’s American Heart Association Scientific Sessions 2010, Chicago, U.S, 13–17 November.

Novartis ends clinical trial

Novartis announced today that the clinical trial programme for the investigational cancer treatment ASA404 (vadimezan) will be discontinued and resources will be reallocated to other compounds in the oncology pipeline.

The decision was made after interim results from a Phase III trial showed that ASA404 would not likely meet the primary endpoint of significantly extending overall survival when used in combination with chemotherapy for the second-line treatment of patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

The study, called ATTRACT-2 (Antivascular Targeted Therapy: Researching ASA404 in Cancer Treatment), included patients with advanced (stage IIIb/IV) NSCLC of squamous or nonsquamous histology who experienced disease progression on or following an initial chemotherapy regimen.

The trial has been stopped early based on a recommendation from an independent data monitoring committee. Investigators involved in the study and regulatory agencies have been notified of the decision to stop the trial. Novartis does not plan to proceed with regulatory filings based on these data.

An intangible asset impairment charge of approximately USD 120 million will be taken in the fourth quarter of 2010 in the Novartis Pharmaceuticals division.

Inhibiter “could combat pulmonary metastasis”

11th November 2010

Positive research findings suggest Silence Therapeutics’ lead RNA interference (RNAi) drug candidate, Atu027, could prevent the formation of pulmonary metastasis in various animal models of cancer metastasis.



Researchers showed that Atu027 inhibited multiple key biological processes that enable and contribute to the dissemination and formation of pulmonary metastases in a murine breast cancer metastasis model. Breast cancer cells prefer to metastasize through the bloodstream to the lung.



The findings were published in the latest edition of the scientific journal Clinical Cancer Research in a peer-reviewed paper entitled Atu027 Prevents Pulmonary Metastasis in Experimental and Spontaneous Mouse Metastasis Models.



Atu027 is a proven inhibitor of the expression of PKN3, a molecule that is believed to play an important role in the progression of cancer and metastasis formation in particular. 



In the study, researchers administered Atu027 to multiple mouse models of breast cancer to evaluate the drug’s ability to prevent the spread of the cancer to the lungs. 



Study data demonstrated that Atu027 has a clear inhibitory effect on the formation of pulmonary metastasis.



With metastasis directly linked to high rates of mortality in cancer patients, the prevention of metastasis dissemination and formation is a critical goal of cancer treatment. 


Klaus Giese, PhD, chief scientific officer at Silence Therapeutics, said: “While the demonstrated inhibition of pulmonary metastasis formation was a positive and important outcome of this study, equally important is what we learned regarding the manner in which Atu027 is able to achieve this effect.”



He said: “These findings showed that in addition to our previously published research demonstrating its ability to inhibit metastasis through the lymphatic system, Atu027 also appears to interrupt the metastatic processes that involve blood flow to the lung.



”Importantly, these data provide us with evidence that Atu027, which targets vascular endothelial cells, may be modulating not only the tumor vasculature itself, but the pulmonary vasculature as well.”



Philip Haworth, PhD, chief executive officer of Silence Therapeutics, said: “We are very pleased to be able to continue to identify the mechanisms that drive Atu027’s therapeutic activity while concurrently advancing the product through its ongoing Phase 1 study.



”Building this collection of novel data on Atu027 will only serve to inform our ongoing development efforts and allow us to maximize the opportunity for success with this program.”



Atu027, a liposomal AtuRNAi(TM) formulation in clinical development for systemic cancer indications, is one of the most clinically advanced RNAi therapeutics in the area of oncology.



In June 2009, Silence initiated an open-label, single-centre, dose-escalation Phase I study with Atu027 in patients with advanced solid (malignant) tumors involving single, as well as, repeated intravenous administration.



The study is expected to be completed early in the second half of 2011.

New “milestone” in combating meningitis B

5th November 2010

New data demonstrated that antibodies induced by Novartis Vaccines investigational, four component, Meningococcal Serogroup B Vaccine (4CMenB) killed the majority of a collection of geographically and genetically diverse meningococcal serogroup B (MenB) strains.

The strain coverage research findings were recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.



To define the potential coverage of 4CMenB against circulating MenB strains, the research investigators examined the characteristics of a collection of 124 MenB strains using pooled sera from immunized adults, and 57 strains using pooled sera from immunised infants.

The strains were selected to represent a wide range of variability of antigens but were not intended to represent any specific regional epidemiologic sample of MenB strains.

The data demonstrated that 85% of the tested strains were killed by pooled sera of adults vaccinated with 4CMenB, as measured by serum bactericidal assay (SBA). SBA is an established and validated correlate of protection.

Additionally, the vaccine performed well in infants; even though infant immune systems are still maturing, 74% of strains were killed using pooled sera from infants vaccinated with 4CMenB. Infants are most at risk of MenB disease and their protection presents the greatest unmet need.



In addition to the vaccine coverage results, a subsequent analysis of a new predictive model, “Meningococcal Antigen Typing System” (MATS), against the tested MenB strains, supported the potential benefits of a multi-component vaccine.

When MATS detected that three vaccine antigens were sufficiently present on any MenB strain, 100% of the time these strains were killed by pooled sera from immunised adults.

In addition, when one or two antigens were detected to be sufficiently present on any MenB strain, 85 and 94% of the time, respectively, they were killed.



”These important findings support our innovative approach using multiple novel components in a single vaccine to provide broad coverage against the deadly and unpredictable MenB disease,” said Andrin Oswald, Head of Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics Division.

“Novartis is committed to developing a MenB vaccine that protects all age groups who are at highest risk of contracting often deadly MenB disease, especially infants and young children,” he said.



MATS is a new, simple and reproducible assay that correlates with SBA to overcome the challenge of traditional SBA testing on large collections of strains.

The immense diversity and number of circulating MenB strains around the world and the limited infant serum volume derived from clinical trials makes traditional testing difficult and cannot be made a routine procedure.

Novartis Vaccines, in collaboration with Novartis Diagnostics, developed MATS as a scientific model to predict whether MenB strains are potentially covered by the vaccine.



The MATS method allows simple and rapid prediction of potential vaccine coverage in different geographic regions and monitoring of strain evolution. Its results alone are not intended to demonstrate, and do not imply, clinical effectiveness.



”The MATS model is a milestone in meningococcal serogroup B vaccine development,” said Joel Ward MD, Professor of Pediatrics at the Center for Vaccine Research, School of Medicine, University of California Los Angeles.

“Given the geographic diversity of MenB and the potential for mutation, it was previously considered impossible to evaluate immune responses to the many circulating strains that can cause deadly disease. MATS has the potential to be used for vaccines against meningococcal diseases and for vaccines against other bacteria as well,” he said.



Novartis is providing the MATS assay platform to national and regional reference laboratories around the world. These institutions are analysing their local or regional circulating strains to predict the potential coverage of 4CMenB in their territories.

National coverage data on more than 1,500 MenB strains are expected to be available by the middle of 2011.

New drug “can reduce brain tumour size”

4th November 2010

The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) has published a study that found patients taking Afinitor® (everolimus) tablets experienced a decrease in the size of their subependymal giant cell astrocytoma (SEGA), a benign brain tumor associated with tuberous sclerosis (TS).

This study, which was previously presented at the 46th American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting, is the first prospective clinical trial of a drug to show treatment benefit in these patients.
 
Tuberous sclerosis is a genetic disorder affecting approximately 25,000 to 40,000 people in the US. Tuberous sclerosis may cause benign tumors to form in vital organs, including the brain, where they can cause seizure and developmental delay, as well as the kidney, heart, eyes, lungs and skin.

SEGAs, benign brain tumors, occur in up to 20% of patients with TS and primarily affect children and adolescents. SEGAs may pose a significant medical risk, including the potential for swelling in the brain, or hydrocephalus.
 
According to data published in NEJM from this Phase I/II study of 28 patients conducted by Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, treatment with everolimus was associated with a significant reduction in primary SEGA volume at six months relative to baseline on independent central review (p<0.001).

Seventy-five percent of patients (21 of 28) experienced a reduction of 30% or greater in the size of their largest SEGA and 32% (9 of 28) experienced a reduction of 50% or greater at six months relative to baseline.
 
The published study findings also showed that everolimus therapy was associated with a clinically relevant reduction from baseline to six months in overall frequency of seizures per 24 hour video electroencephalograms (EEG) (n=16; median change -1 seizure, p=0.022). Additionally, no patients required surgery or developed a new SEGA while receiving everolimus.
 
Everolimus was recently approved in the US under the FDA’s accelerated approval program as Afinitor for patients with SEGA associated with TS who require therapeutic intervention but are not candidates for curative surgical resection. The effectiveness of Afinitor is based on an analysis of change in SEGA volume. A Phase III study is underway that compares everolimus to placebo to explore the clinical benefits of Afinitor for the treatment of patients with SEGA associated with TS.
 
The most common adverse reactions observed (incidence ≥30%) in this trial were mouth sores, upper respiratory tract infections, sinusitis, middle ear infections and fever.
 
“This is the first clinical trial to show that a drug has the potential to provide patients with growing SEGAs, many of whom are children, another treatment option besides brain surgery,” said David Franz, MD, Director, Tuberous Sclerosis Clinic at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and principal investigator of the study.

“In addition to decreasing the size of the brain tumors, everolimus was associated with a significant reduction in the frequency of seizures, which occur in 90% of affected individuals,” he said.

New mobile solution “set to double patient-facing time”

Community healthcare workers can double the amount of available time to spend in front of patients as a result of a new mobile application from communications specialist Skillweb.

Recent research suggests that, due to the current administrative systems in place, as little as 18 to 30 per cent of a community healthcare worker’s day is made up of patient facing time.

“The SmartTask solution is set to revolutionise how community teams are coordinated by improving diary management, removing unnecessary travel and duplicate reporting. The result will be considerably more time spent actually interacting face to face with patients,” explains Paul Ridden, Managing Director at Skillweb.

Community healthcare workers such as midwives, district nurses and mental health clinicians, will no longer have to travel to the office each day to collect their schedule. Instead, staff using SmartTask will be able to receive details of planned and ad hoc appointments electronically via a mobile device, removing as much as 1.5 hours from their daily travel.

Essential patient details can be captured via SmartTask so that community workers can simply input the information once, rather than up to six times per visit using alternative paper-based systems. Meanwhile, the ability to transfer appointments between team members will slash the time taken to reschedule bookings when emergencies occur.

A shared real-time view of staff diaries will achieve enhanced management visibility to help deliver straightforward, stress-free team co-ordination. SmartTask has been designed to support the NHS QIPP (Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention) programme and contribute to more than £6 billion of savings targeted by the Department of Health in improved staff productivity and by providing efficient, integrated community services.

The mobile software application can be delivered via a range of rugged, semi-rugged, commercial and mobile phone technology, and is suitable for all Blackberry and Windows Mobile devices. In addition, SmartTask’s online portal can be easily integrated with other back-office PAS systems to streamline operational procedures and minimise administrative requirements. In particular, it will enable healthcare organisations to speed up the booking of clinical appointments by automating the requests process.

 “Community healthcare workers are increasingly bogged down by administration and want to spend more quality time with patients. This technology will free up their time by effectively replacing paper-based and laptop diary tasking solutions and this in turn will have a radical effect on patient care,” concludes Paul Ridden.

Skillweb is a leading mobile communications company within the UK with more than 11 years providing technology solutions that help organisations manage their mobile workforces and track the movement of goods. The company has been awarded Approved Service Recipient status under IGSoC (Information Governance Statement of Compliance), allowing connection to the N3 Network and securing patient data.

Skillweb

Foundation Trust hospital chooses new IT infrastructure

The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust has chosen BridgeHead Software, the Healthcare Storage Virtualization™ company, to provide healthcare data and storage management solutions as it implements plans around improving operational efficiency, cost savings and patient care.

The deployment of BridgeHead Software’s solutions will enable the trust to create an environment that optimises the storage, management and protection of Rotherham’s clinical and administrative data.

“At Rotherham, we have several key IT initiatives in place to drive innovation through technology to create an infrastructure that helps us improve the delivery of patient care. These initiatives include the incorporation of best of breed technologies that will help create operational efficiencies, save cost, deliver ROI, whilst providing a robust, future-proof strategy for our organisation. To achieve this in the ambitious timescales we have set for ourselves, we have found it necessary to work outside of the national programme to find vendors that clearly match our requirements,” comments David Brown, Head of ICT at The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust.

Mr Brown continues: “Clearly for us and other trusts, data protection, security, management and storage is absolutely critical to underpin our wider IT initiatives. This is why our relationship with BridgeHead Software has become so important. BridgeHead specialises only in the healthcare market, so they are well placed to understand our data, our hospital environment and our industry; and we’re delighted with their progress to date. Over the course of this project, we have been really impressed by the wide range of solutions they offer in backup, disaster recovery and archiving, for both clinical and administrative data. Their knowledge of healthcare and the fact that we have easy access to their key personnel, from senior management through to product support, makes them a hugely valuable partner – plus, as their products are vendor agnostic, integration with existing systems is not an issue.”
 
The original contract was awarded to BridgeHead Software in October 2009 as support for the implementation of the trust’s new Electronic Patient Record (EPR) system using MEDITECH’s software – the deployment of which was part of Rotherham’s strategic decision to opt for alternative solutions outside the National Programme for IT (NPfIT). Looking beyond the national programme has also enabled the trust to explore other best of breed solutions to suit their IT requirements. Consequently, Rotherham chose BridgeHead Software for its data and storage management requirements. BridgeHead was selected based on its longstanding relationship with MEDITECH, as well as being noted for helping healthcare organisations to move to a digitised patient record environment, one of Rotherham’s key objectives.

The initial project with BridgeHead Software was to provide the trust with its HT Backup® product, for backup and disaster recovery, supporting the management and storage of increased levels of data generated by the EPR. However, it soon became clear to Rotherham that BridgeHead Software could help them in other areas of the enterprise resulting in the adoption of BridgeHead’s FileStore EHR™
and MailStore™ products. The decision to implement BridgeHead solutions has been part of a drive by the trust towards consolidating its storage infrastructure and a reflection of its forward thinking approach to developing new ways of working through the use of innovative technology. As BridgeHead Software’s solutions are vendor agnostic, with the ability to integrate with existing systems, this has helped the company to become the strategic partner of choice for all of the trust’s mission critical data and storage management requirements.

The second phase of the project involved the deployment of FileStore EHR which has enabled the trust to fulfil its data recovery obligations as well as ensure records are indexed, de-duplicated and encrypted so they are in keeping with data protection and privacy regulations. Part of Rotherham’s vision was to create a paperless hospital environment. The BridgeHead systems help take away the problem for healthcare professionals of how to efficiently manage and control the proliferation of data that will accompany the switch from paper-based to digitised records. FileStore EHR ensures records are optimised (e.g. through compression, de-duplication etc.), indexed, and made fully searchable before being stored so that data can be accessed by hospital staff efficiently and cost effectively.

Phase two has also included the implementation of MailStore which has enabled the trust to manage and archive email content for over 1,500 of its Microsoft Exchange users so that computer systems can run faster whilst dramatically freeing up storage space and reducing storage costs. Critically, the deployment of MailStore will also free up staff time away from managing email so they can focus their efforts on patient care.

Currently BridgeHead is working on the third phase of the project which includes the deployment of its solutions to further support the management and protection of data specifically around clinical services as well as the rollout of MailStore to an additional 2,000 users. MailStore will also help the trust  manage its planned upgrade from Exchange 2003 to 2010.

“At Rotherham, our mission is to act as a spearhead to prove that technology can work and deliver benefits, both for the hospital and more importantly for the improvement in the delivery of patient care. This is why we are committed to developing a consolidated infrastructure with future-proof solutions – strategic partners such as BridgeHead Software have become key to achieving that objective,” added Brown.

Also commenting, Tony Cotterill (pictured), CEO BridgeHead Software stated: “It’s a privilege to be working with a pioneering healthcare organisation such as The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust. Moving patient records to electronic storage, the trust has embraced the importance of building a stronger healthcare data foundation to support their infrastructure.”

“Providing electronic patient records is, ultimately, about improving patient care, efficiently and cost effectively,” Cotterill further adds. “But unless you have robust and flexible solutions to manage the underlying data, hospitals run the risk of developing an application strategy that appears sound on the surface, but will eventually be compromised by ever expanding storage sub-systems. This is why we have developed our software – to specifically support the need for managing digital healthcare information. It’s all about optimising the data, securing it from unauthorised access, protecting it in the event of system outages or disasters, and making sure the right information can be delivered to the right healthcare professionals, at the right time, at the right location.”

“There is a lot of pressure on trusts to deliver £20 billion efficiency savings by 2014. It’s clear from the projects we are working with The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust that solutions, like ours, will play a significant role in helping hospitals achieve these ambitious targets.” concludes Cotterill.

Much of the work to integrate BridgeHead’s HT Backup®, FileStore EHR™ and MailStore™ services has already been undertaken and The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust is aiming to have all work completed by the end of the year.

Bridgehead Software

SHA wins ‘Best Use of Telehealth’ award with Iocom powered solution

26th October 2010

Iocom, a leading software provider for video conferencing capabilities, today announced that NHS East of England (a Strategic Health Authority) won its 2010 E-Health Insider Award for best use of telehealth and telecare in delivering 24/7 stroke thrombolysis by using an IOCOM videoconferencing solution. IOCOM offers its congratulations to the health organisation for its determination to change the status quo in the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients through the use of technology.  

The East of England Stroke Networks – part of the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS) – asked the ICT Strategy and Special Projects team of the Strategic Health Authority to come up with a solution that would enable 24/7 treatment of stroke patients, particularly thrombolysis, and allow the procedure to be administered to patients in a timely manner regardless of location.

The team developed a system that would allow a patient at any participating hospital in the region to be seen by a qualified stroke consultant working remotely from home or another hospital location. This service proved to be highly successful during a four month pilot and has saved lives and greatly improved the quality of life of a number of other patients. Some patients treated using the solution were able to walk out of the hospital of their own accord, potentially negating severe disability and the need for significant ongoing care. The savings that resulted from avoiding the need for ongoing care of the patients treated during the pilot paid for the solution’s initial cost.

“We are honoured by the EHI award and IOCOM’s video conferencing solution was the ideal product for enabling remote diagnosis of ‘Stroke’ to become possible,” said Anthony Whitaker, Manager of ICT Strategy and Special Projects for the NHS East of England.

“Working with St. Vincent’s Healthcare Consulting and IOCOM, we deployed our own customized packaged system that provides the diagnostic-quality radiology images, visual and audio communication between the patient, hospital staff and the remote consultant. With the fantastic success of the pilot and the capability in place it is now just a matter of delivering the system to the remainder of our 16 hospitals so that they became comfortable with the solution and see the same benefits repeated across our region.”

Alan Lowe, COO of St. Vincent’s Healthcare Consulting, added: “When we were asked to build a video communications solution for East of England SHA, we had to turn to a technology partner that was equally committed to delivering success. We chose IOCOM because of its advanced technology, the ability to make it work with minimal front-end effort and easy to deploy infrastructure in an NHS setting. Given the performance of our previous medical solutions using IOCOM in various specialities there was only one product we recommend to ensure high quality, reliable and an easy to use solution with a proven track record in the NHS.”
 
The pilot project undertaken by The NHS East of England uses IOCOM software with a computer on wheels, known as a “COW,” which houses a fixed video camera and audio link. Health providers use specially-equipped laptops that automatically launch the IOCOM video conferencing technology as well as enable them to securely read CT images without having to directly access the hospitals’ systems.

IOCOM provides a software solution to health care organisations that provides nearly unlimited multi-party capability and diagnostic-quality images. Data images transmitted and displayed by IOCOM are superior because they are transmitted in native resolution containing subtle color distinctions necessary for interpreting MRI and X-ray medical images.

“We are thrilled for the NHS East of England to be recognised by E-Health Insider as a result of its work with stroke patients,” said J W Penland, CEO of IOCOM.

“We believe that as more healthcare provider organisations understand the benefits of using video conferencing to improve patient care – and how truly easy it is to get started – they will investigate all we have to offer.”

Iocom

SASH cuts to the chase and procures Managed Service

22nd October 2010

Surrey & Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust has become the first NHS Trust to procure a Managed Service to deliver InterSystems Ensemble, a seamless platform for integration and the development of new connectable applications. The Trust, who appointed ReStart Consulting as its Delivery Partner, originally went out to tender via the Buying Solutions framework to procure a managed service for integration skills in order to achieve its February 2011 target of full system interoperability with the National Care Record Solution (CRS).

The Trust employs approximately 3,000 staff and services a community of over 416,000 people, with an IT department of 18 staff split across technical, development and system support. Ian Mackenzie, Director of Business Intelligence & Technology knew from past experience that a Managed Service would save time and guarantee better results. Mackenzie says “I first procured and installed an integration engine about 10 years ago and realised from that experience that it was essential to work with experts who could support our business need.  The cost and hassle of looking after ‘this’ ourselves is not part of Trust core work and I would always look to outside experts who can come in and quickly deliver solutions.  This also gives us instant access to a wide range of knowledge and experience from other sectors.”

As part of an upgrade to the Trust’s Cerner Millennium system, SASH had the opportunity to implement Order Communications and to extend its integration capabilities. Godfrey Milbourn, Project Manager at SASH identified the requirement for a new TIE that would provide them with the robustness and flexibility to deliver on time, cost-effectively. “We were fairly agnostic about the integration engine that we used. It needed to meet some basic requirements, be recommended by our service partner and enable them to provide a cost effective service.” Milbourn continued, “Our main objective however, is to ensure that we hit the February 2011 deadline of taking over responsibility for integration from our LSP and implementing Order Comms. So we knew we had to employ the right professionals and deploy the right solution to enable us to meet this target.”

Historically, the Trust’s Systems Integration has been limited between Cerner Millennium and other departmental systems. The integration engine, provided by the Trust’s LSP, BT, was limited to only sharing patients’ demographic information between the PAS and supporting departmental systems, such as Cardiology and Pharmacy. “We set out to procure a managed service as being the most cost effective way to support our integration requirements for development and on-going support. Our Managed Service Partner, ReStart Consulting was confident that the InterSystems Ensemble rapid integration platform would be a quicker and easier route to success if we were to hit our 2011 target,” Milbourn added.

ReStart Consulting is providing SASH with a complete Managed Service option that includes the deployment of Ensemble across the Trust and subsequent development to enable full system interoperability between the Trust’s core departmental systems and Cerner Millennium.

The first systems to feel the benefit of the roll out will be Order Comms from Radiology and Pathology systems back to the PAS. Clinicians will be able to place orders through the PAS which feeds information to the departmental systems and back to the PAS with results. “We expect benefits in terms of efficiency and clinical safety. Radiology and Pathology will receive complete patient and clinical information in a timely fashion, and the results will be returned immediately to the Millennium system as they become available,” explained Milbourn. The Trust’s initial priorities are to ensure integration between Cardiology and Pharmacy and achieve Order Comms between Radiology and Pathology to-and-from Cerner Millennium. The deployment can then continue across other Trusts systems as necessary.

The timescales on this project were very short. ReStart had just one month to provide a complete hardware upgrade, using partner Maindec, which included the time given to install the Ensemble solution across the Trust. In just eight weeks, ReStart developed the required interfaces to be ready for Order Comms testing in October 2010.

ReStart Consulting’s comprehensive managed service has removed a great deal of risk and resourcing challenges away from the Trust. This means that the management of the hardware, software, day-to-day issues, uptime, and disaster recovery are all the responsibility of a dedicated and responsive support team of experienced Restart integration engineers. In particular, ReStart has implemented its own comprehensive remote monitoring tools that enable the support team to respond proactively to hardware and software problems before they have an impact on service.

Sean Connelly, Head of Ensemble Practice at ReStart Consulting commented, “Once we received a green light for the SASH integration project we had to react very quickly. With BT setting the pace for the TIE switch over, we were under pressure to deliver key stages in co-ordination with other third party suppliers. Despite a number of late customer requirements we managed to deliver all stages on time to the satisfaction of the Trust.  This is all possible because of the dedication, experience and high level of standards that we work to within the ReStart Ensemble team.”

Mike Symers, Director of ReStart Consulting, concluded by saying, “This is a fantastic example of Trust and supplier working in partnership. The process has been and still is, immensely enjoyable, when we all work together to achieve real results, really quickly. This project is a great example of an InterSystems Ensemble deployment in the NHS.”

Intersystems

CompuGroup Medical invests 130 Million Euros in health system

21st October 2010

In the next five years the CompuGroup Medical AG will invest 130 Million Euros in the health system. Operative expenditures will be activated, among other things, for new and further developments of innovative products already underway in the Software Assisted Medicine (SAM) line.

These intelligent software solutions support physicians in the precisely focused preparation of medical knowledge as well as in the making available of relevant data and patient-specific information and recommendations − at the right time and place. Information on the innovations has been provided by the enterprise in a series of ten articles. The first article introduces the SAM Server and the SAM Framework.

The basis of Software Assisted Medicine is the SAM Server: It acts as both central memory and control unit and organizes the electronic communication between all parties involved in the health system. The SAM Framework processes medical knowledge and guidelines as basis technology in the SAM Server and makes the relevant information available over standardized interfaces.

The SAM Server as knowledge and information store
The SAM Server is the core element of SAM’s medical knowledge: Here is where medical treatment paths are stored, patient data squared, and instructions for guideline-tuned treatment provided. This information is individually harmonized with the health data of each and every patient and is displayed in context in the doctor’s and hospital’s information system  precisely at the time the physician needs support and precisely at the place where they are relevant. The upshot: Better quality of treatment, hence better quality of life.

The SAM Framework provides the framework for the communication
The SAM Framework processes the data on the SAM Server according to indicated product and makes it available in standardized form over interfaces. In daily application the SAM Framework thereby makes possible through this standardization the communication between all service providers in the health system: resident physicians, hospitals, rehab centers, old people’s homes, health insurance companies or medical device manufacturers.
 
Medical device manufacturers transfer information without frictional loss
By means of the SAM Framework, f.i., manufacturers of medical devices can send information to half of the physicians in Germany with no friction. This is because some one out of two doctors works with a physician’s information system from CompuGroup Medical and thus automatically has a connection with the SAM Framework. As an open system, however, the interfaces of the SAM Framework are available to all other physicians as well. Integration into the respective system is simple and can be done in no time at all by every system provider.

CompuGroup Medical