Enriched summary care records

Dr Mark Spring

Dr Mark Spring is a GP at Sandford Surgery in Dorset. He is also the clinical lead for Urgent Care Services, a GP Out of Hours service in the same area. He explains the value and simplicity of enriching Summary Care Records (SCR) with additional information:

More information with minimum effort
Enhancements to the SCR mean that a set of additional information from the GP record, in addition to medication, allergies, and adverse reactions, can now be easily added to support the delivery of person centred co-ordinated care. Enriched SCRs include significant medical history and procedures, anticipatory care information, immunisations, end of life care information and communication preferences.
The enhanced functionality to create enriched SCRs is simple. The whole process is easy and takes less than a minute to do. Consent from the patient can be gained by GPs, nurses, healthcare support workers or a receptionist. I can be confident that significant information from the patient’s record will be instantly available within their SCR. I can record information once and share it easily, which is fantastic!

enriched-summary-care-recordsInformed Decisions
Enriched SCRs are especially helpful when treating patients within an urgent and unscheduled care setting. As an Out-of-Hours GP, I know the importance of making sure essential patient information can be accessed. My patients don’t just have problems from ‘nine to five’. They need and deserve high quality, informed healthcare whenever it is required.
In the past, there has been a lack of information to support patients when they receive care away from their GP practice. Patients feel frustrated at being asked to repeatedly provide the same information and often find it difficult to recall this clearly. Sharing information such as patient preferences or plans for future care supports both me and my colleagues to really understand patients, their circumstances and their choices.

Example 1 
I was asked to triage an elderly patient late on a Friday evening. The patient had been diagnosed with a urine infection and had been prescribed cefradine earlier in the day. The patient was concerned that she may be allergic to the medication. I was able to access the patients SCR which highlighted that previous medication had made the patient nauseated and confused, and that she was allergic to penicillin. However, as this was an enriched SCR I was also able to establish that the patient had a complex medical history and had been prescribed cefradine previously, without any apparent ill effect, and was therefore able to successfully reassure the patient to continue with their medication.

Example 2 
I saw a 45 year old man who was new to the practice and presented requesting a prescription for medication he had been taking for hypertension. Despite the patient appearing well, I asked for consent to view the patient’s SCR. I was then able to establish that the patient was an ex-combatant with a history of severe depression and had in the past made a serious attempt on his own life. Understanding the patients previous problems helped build an early rapport with the patient, which left the patient impressed with the continuity of care he had received.

Improved Patient Experience
Knowing details of a patient’s medication and allergies is really useful. However, also knowing the reason for the medication and any significant medical history or diagnoses is quite simply invaluable. This is what the SCR can now provide.
Creating enriched SCRs is simple and very effective in supporting clinical management. It helps to make clinical engagement with new and unfamiliar patients safer and is particularly helpful in supporting doctors who are treating the most complex and vulnerable patients.

For more information regarding enriched Summary Care Records please visit the HSCIC website or contact scr.comms@hscic.gov.uk.

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