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Case study - Save time when searching for patient records

Client: Dr Stephenson & Partners, family GP practice


Dr Stephenson and Partners is a family GP practice in Concord, a suburb of Washington, Tyne and Wear. It cares for 12,200 patients and is part of Sunderland CCG.

Situated in the busy village centre, the practice operates in a catchment area that was home to mining communities and once housed an asbestos plant. It remains a place where many older people carry illnesses associated with those industries.

The practice has occupied its current premises in the purpose-built Victoria Road Health Centre since 2003. It shares these premises with another 4 GP practices, all separately managed but joined by membership of the Sunderland GP Alliance.

The problem

With limited space available in the offices, and records for over 12,200 patients, locating records was fast becoming an issue. This was especially important when patients with occupation-related illnesses presented to GPs.

Despite being paper-light since 1999, paper records that pre-dated the decision to go digital were occupying a space of around 25sq metres.  Space which could be used for patient care.

The solution

NHSBSA Scanning Services worked alongside the practice team to digitise all paper files, supplying equipment to enable the admin team to batch up the files to be collected and taken to Newcastle for processing.

Spreadsheets kept track of where records were at all times during the project. 

On completion all digital files were stored on the Practice clinical system, for easy access by clinicians.

The result

The completion of the project enabled staff to speed up treatment by making accurate medical history more easily accessible.

It also allowed the GP Practice to reconfigure the 25sq metres of space to provide additional consulting rooms vital for an expanding elderly patient list.

"We’ve been sold on the idea of digitised records for a long time. NHSBSA offer quick retrieval and greater efficiency at point of reference, so ultimately they help us to provide better healthcare."

June Pace, Practice Manager, Dr Stephenson & Partners