Latest News 16 February 2021 | A significant reduction in paper use is just one of the benefits of a new electronic patient notes system at Counties Manukau Health.
eNotes was introduced late last year over four weeks across five wards and 122 beds in the Adult Rehabilitation Health of the Older Person (ARHOP) ward. eNotes has replaced the paper clinical progress notes which are most commonly hand written and placed in the patient folder.
IS Clinical Change Manager at CM Health Sally Dennis says the average ARHOP patient would generate about 30 pages of paper during a stay.
“You can imagine the amount of paper that is now saved with going into e Notes,” Ms Dennis says, adding some paper notes will remain where signatures are required, for example.
eNotes is easy to use and is more accessible than paper records, she says.
To access eNotes, staff use laptops, workstations on wheels, desktops or hand-held tablets, depending on what suits the situation.
“Staff are now saying they don’t have to search for the folder of notes anymore. eNotes is accessible anywhere in the hospital. A doctor could be at the other end of the hospital reviewing a patient and they could just jump on line,” Ms Dennis says.
More than one clinician can access a patient’s notes at one time and less time is now spent deciphering the notes due to the typed format.
Records can be searched by key words, and different disciplines are colour coded, for example nurses’ entries are blue and doctors are red.
“There’s no more flicking through piles of paper notes to find what someone wrote, instead staff can now sort notes based on their role, or service if needed. Staff and patients benefit from eNotes due to their information being more accessible to enable the right care at the right time and place. It’s a lovely, elegant system to use,” she says.
eNotes was originally created as Centric Notes by Waitematā DHB.
Ms Dennis says staff are positive about eNotes and many who do not yet have the system are keen to do so.
The plan is to roll out eNotes to all inpatient areas within Counties Manukau Health by the end of this year.