Company: CapscanCustomer: NYEDSubmitted by: MCC InternationalDate: Summer 1998North Yorkshire Emergency Doctors (NYED) is a co-operative of General Practitioners who have joined together to handle out of hours emergencies. Born out of the consolidation of the Yorkshire Medical Practitioners Bureau and the York Doctors Co-op, the Health Authorities fund 20% of the operation, while the remainder of the cost is borne by the doctors themselves.North Yorkshire Emergency Doctors Co-operative began in February 1996. Operating from 6 sites throughout Yorkshire and employing 96 staff, its main objective is to provide a speedy, high quality emergency contact service between the 310 GPs and 550,000 patients under their jurisdiction. Prior to the creation of the Co-op, the number of doctors on duty out of hours at any one time in North Yorkshire might be as high as 99.
That number is between 7 and 12 due to more effective resource co-ordination that North Yorkshire Emergency Doctors provides.Graham Jackson, General Manager of North Yorkshire Emergency Doctors Co-operative explains, “Since the mid 1960s, the demand for out of hours calls has increased tenfold, and continues to grow at an ever increasing rate. Unfortunately, the number of doctors has stayed about the same. NYED was set up to cope with this increasing work load, make the best use of resources and – above all – maintain and improve the quality of care available to patients.”Information technology plays a critical part within the Co-operative, and over a year ago the organisation invested in a computerised system to replace out-dated, time consuming, paper based operations.
The new system facilitates not only the administrative and operational demands of the Co-operative, but also the vital storage and retrieval of patient information, speeding up receipt and transmission of calls, increasing accuracy and generating essential grid referencing information.Capscan’s address management software, Matchcode, plays a vital part in making sure a doctor reaches a patient as quickly as possible. Matchcode allows the user to type in an element of the address – such as the postcode, or street and house number. Matchcode’s powerful search engine will then locate that address and present it in a moment complete with integrated Ordnance Survey grid references. This means an operator taking an emergency call can still quickly and accurately access all the vital information required, even when supplied with only a partial address. If there is more than one possible match, the software will present all options for the operator to narrow down the address.
Matchcode is embedded within NYED’s existing Adastra Version 2 Call Answering Software. Matchcode allows the Operations Centre, which is controlled by five receptionists at any one time, to quickly access accurate address and grid reference information of patient locations. The software ensures precision by comparing records with 24 million addresses stored in Royal Mail’s own Postcode Address File (PAF), guaranteeing all addresses are as accurate and up to date as possible.After an evaluation of current products on the market, Capscan’s Matchcode was installed at the NYED’s Emergency Operations Centre in February 1997. Graham Jackson explains the reason for selecting Capscan, “Matchcode was the best package available. It also offered the flexibility of integrating with our existing software, as it can handle a wide range of input and output formats”.
Continues Jackson, “Each day the system handles between 200 and 1000 calls and on average, Matchcode reduces the response time by 2 minutes. Two minutes can be critical in a medical emergency. Through Matchcode, we can identify an address more quickly, and see exactly where it is located. This means we can ask the nearest doctor to attend to the patient.””The software’s flexibility has allowed us to also link it with our A-REMOTE remote access system which permits our computers to transmit and receive data This enables doctors on the move to link in to the host system.”He concludes, “The introduction of Matchcode has created a perfect partnership between new and existing software, creating an efficiency of time which is critical to the success of the Co-operative”.