Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust is well known for its investment in technology. Their hospitals have been at the forefront of medical innovation and progress since they were founded almost 900 years ago. Both hospitals have built on these traditions and continue to have a reputation for excellence and innovation.
Implementing BigHand Digital Dictation technology is the latest in a long line of significant investments made to improve internal processes and faster serve the 900,000 patient contacts they have each year.
Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust originally began identifying Digital Dictation as a clear tool to help streamline and alleviate their document creation process, in turn providing a workable solution to its workforce. After the success of replacing tape Dictation equipment with a BigHand pilot in Oncology and Renal in 2009, Oncology reduced spend on Outsourcing in the pilot stage by 40%, which in turn led the Trust to extend the solution trust wide into departments such as Cardiothoracic, Sleep Unit, Diabetes & Endocrinology, Speech and Language Therapy, Nutrition and Dietetics and so on. BigHand was eventually rolled out to over 1,700 users and over 13 directorates across the Trust.
As part of the Trust’s drive to decrease the turnaround time of documents, they were keen to share work among existing secretaries as well as BigHand integrating with the Trust’s outsourcing agency to third party transcription agencies.
The business case for Digital Dictation was predominately led by Clinical Services, which in turn was approved by the Trust IT Forum. With BigHand, the ability for the trust to report on peaks and troughs and general capacity across directorates ensured the turnaround time was improved and there was a reduced need for temporary secretarial staff in the future as a result.
The CQUIN (Commissioning for Quality and Innovation) payment framework set a target which requires clinic letters to be sent from Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust to GP’s within 5 working days of the clinic date. BigHand has worked with Guy’s and St Thomas’ to assist them with meeting this target.
BigHand is also listed under two NHS Frameworks: BigHand were awarded onto the NHS Commercial Solutions Framework for Digital Dictation and Speech Recognition as the highest ranked supplier following a full European procurement process, which included evaluations assessing Financial Stability, Professional Capability, Technical Capability, Experience and Value for Money.
The NHS Shared Business Services (NHS SBS) procurement framework enables NHS bodies to procure quality Digital Dictation and voice recognition solutions efficiently and economically. BigHand has been awarded onto both the digital dictation lot (scoring maximum marks) and the voice recognition lot.
“Since deploying BigHand across Nephrology and Transplantation several years ago, we have seen a huge change in letters and other Dictations handled in the department - and this has been universally for the better. Clinical Dictation is uploaded to the secretaries on a patient by patient basis rather than being sent in batches via tape. The secretarial staff can now share the work around, improving demand management with a clear view of date and priority order for all of the pending dictations, and are confident that no letters are lost or unacceptably delayed. Also the ability to send Dictation files from BigHand to external transcription services is a reassuring back-up should."
Dr James Spicer, Medical Oncology Consultant
"Compared with many other IT applications, BigHand is quick, intuitive and robust. Secretaries can see new voice files in real time, and sometimes have urgent letters ready for review before clinic is over!"
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