Maternity Services Welcomes First Babies with Electronic Health Record

13 Dec 2016

The  introduction of Irelands Maternal & Newborn Clinical Management System( MN-CMS) will see the implementation of an electronic health record (EHR) for all women and babies in maternity services in Ireland.  

Cork University Maternity Hospital (CUMH) is the first site to launch MN-CMS in a national project that will introduce an electronic health record across all 19 maternity hospitals in Ireland. As the first site to Go Live, CUMH has a leading role in the design and testing of the eChart; the preparation of training materials; and the development of policies and work flows. Plans are in place to roll out the system across the country with the next implementation due to take place in University Hospital Kerry followed by The Rotunda Hospital and the National Maternity Hospital.

Welcoming the systems ‘go live’ Minister for Health Simon Harris T.D. said "The introduction of an electronic health record for mothers and babies in Cork this weekend marks a very significant advance in our national journey towards a digital health system.

It is also a sign of our commitment to improve maternity services and to implement the National Maternity Strategy. Additional investment funding provided for maternity services in recent years has supported the development of the new system, which the Strategy recommended should be implemented as a priority.

I compliment the clinicians, local management and the eHealth Ireland team involved and I look forward to the further roll-out of electronic records for all patients in the immediate years ahead. This will support better, safer clinical decision-making and a more connected health service delivering improved health outcomes. For our patients to be empowered and to experience a patient centred service then the health system will need to weave a digital fabric that supports health and wellbeing and improves the quality and safety of care as well as provision of integrated care."

The introduction of this new system in Ireland also marks the introduction of the first national electronic patient chart for maternity anywhere in the world.  This means that every maternity hospital in one country will be using the same electronic chart with standardisation of the information flow and collection with very obvious advantages for the patient and carers.

Professor Richard Greene, Consultant Obstetrician, A/Head of Department Obstetrics and Gynaecology, UCC  and MN-CMS Joint National Clinical Lead for Obstetrics, said “This new clinical management system means that patients will have an electronic record instead of a paper record, which will enhance patient care.  The system includes maternity early warning scores (iMEWS) and a sepsis early warning scoring system, eprescribing and order communication tools for mother and baby patient care. Neonatal ICU has its first digital support solution to capturing of key information. This ‘go live’ is a result of the dedication and teamwork of many staff within maternity services nationally.”

Mr Richard Corbridge, HSE’s Chief Information Officer and Chief Officer of eHealth Ireland said: “All babies from birth will now have their own digital health record.   The MN-CMS is one of the strategic programmes within eHealth Ireland and its implementation will help to build a better healthcare service for mothers and babies.”

The HSE has a contract with Cerner to deliver the Maternal & Newborn Clinical Management System (MN-CMS) which will then be rolled out to all 19 maternity units over a three-year period. The system has been specifically tailored for the Irish healthcare system with clinicians completing a full clinical validation of the design and build of the MN-CMS.

The record of both mother and baby can now be shared where appropriate throughout the maternity care pathway. Matthew Pickett, General Manager, Cerner Ireland said: “Cerner is proud to be partnered with the HSE in the creation of this new system which has been designed and built with extensive Irish clinical input, and specific to the needs of Ireland’s population and clinical community. This first implementation in Cork is an exciting step toward a national digitised health care system.

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The HSE and eHealth Ireland are delighted to announce the arrival of Emily one of Ireland’s first newborns to have their own electronic health record from birth.  Weighing 7lb 5oz, Emily daughter of Ellen Shine and  Aidan Cotter from Cork arrived in Cork University Maternity  Hospital on Saturday 3rd December 2016.

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