Safely and securely sharing information from a person’s patient record, when it is needed, will help to deliver more co-ordinated health and care services.

A major boost to achieving this in now underway across BOB STP thanks to £7.5 million of funding being awarded to develop a STPs and Integrated Care Systems in the Thames Valley, Surrey, and Bedfordshire area,  to become a Local Health and Care Record Partnership.

The success comes from a joint bid by BOB STP, Surrey Heartlands Health and Care Partnership, Frimley Health and Care and Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes STP.

Th funding will enable the Partnership to use technology to enable patient data and patient health and care information to be shared across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Milton Keynes, Oxfordshire and Surrey (Thames Valley and Surrey).

It means that wherever a patient is treated in the Thames Valley and Surrey area, health and care staff will have improved and faster access to vital information about the person, so they can better determine the right action to take as quickly as possible.

Patients will not have to repeat their medical history or social care information every time they deal with a new member of staff or organisation. This will avoid errors, such as forgetting the name or dosage of an important medication. It will particularly assist people with multiple conditions or health and care needs as they will be able to access information from their own patient record, to help them to look after their health conditions.

All information will be stored securely on a protected NHS IT system. Authorised professionals involved in a person’s care must have a legitimate reason to access their information and they will only be able to see the information needed to help with treatment. Patients can opt out of having their record shared at any time.

As well as helping to join up care, the introduction of new technology will also help patient data and patient health information to be used to improve health and care services through research and planning.

The Thames Valley and Surrey Health and Care Record Partnership is not a standalone organisation. It is a working agreement that enables people and health and care organisations, such as NHS hospitals, GPs, local councils, patients and staff to come together to discuss and identify what matters to them so that the right solutions are in place by 2020.

It does not replace the local care records projects that are being developed, such as the Surrey Care Record or My Care Record in Buckinghamshire. Instead, the partnership’s work will provide the means to join up these records across a much larger area and provide the opportunity for each area to share what is working well so that it can be replicated elsewhere.