Mental health patients gain faster access to care through pioneering digital integration

Patients sectioned under the Mental Health Act (MHA) will soon receive faster access to emergency care thanks to a landmark digital integration enabling key data to be uploaded to the electronic patient record automatically.

Until recently, a paper-based system was used to complete all MHA legal forms required for admission and treatment, causing care delays and unintentional data errors and omissions. Through use of a secure, centralised digital platform – launched by digital Mental Health Act specialists Thalamos in 2018 – this has been significantly reduced at a number of Trusts. (An average of almost 14 minutes per form completed is saved and the risk of errors on forms lowered by up to 89.4%).

Now, Thalamos is integrating with The Access Group Electronic Patient Records (EPR) system, Rio EPR, to speed up access to care for the most vulnerable patients even further. 

Marking a new gold standard for quicker and safer acute mental health care delivery, the integration will enable all information entered via the Thalamos platform to be automatically uploaded directly into patient records held within the EPR. Practitioners involved in all stages of care will be able to instantly access vital patient information, helping streamline and better inform care.

MHA administrators will no longer need to manually upload this data, providing further time-savings and fewer treatment delays. As a result, more clinical time will be freed up to spend with patients. Unintentional data or information errors or omissions will also be reduced. 

Access Rio EPR is already in use across two-thirds of UK mental health Trusts. This integration with Thalamos provides a promising blue-print for more streamlined, connected acute mental health care to be introduced nationwide. The Thalamos Assess solution has passed certification to work with Access Rio EPR as part of Access HSC’s Certified Partner Programme which was designed to help speed up interoperability adoption.

Arden Tomison, founder of Thalamos, said:

“It’s an absolute privilege to be working alongside Access Health, Support and Care (HSC) to deliver such a game-changing step for digital transformation throughout acute mental health care. We firmly believe that greater integration and interoperability can considerably improve quality of care and optimise outcomes for those sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

This helps strengthen the impact of digital tools and systems, providing invaluable time-savings, streamlining patient referrals and ultimately helping deliver swifter, safer and simpler routes to care. 

As a team, Thalamos are looking forward to continuing this collaboration and helping improve the experience for patients right across acute mental health care.”

Steve Sawyer, Managing Director of Access Health, Support & Care, comments: 

“It’s great to see software suppliers partnering to support clinicians and ultimately benefit the people receiving care. The integration between Thalamos and our Access Rio EPR is another great example of how software can support the healthcare industry to streamline processes and provide vital access to information at the point of care delivery.”