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The Acute Floor Information System (AFIS) will support the development of acute floors in hospitals and will allow for real-time electronic recording of patient interventions in acute settings such as emergency departments (EDs), Acute Medical Assessment Units (AMAUs), Acute Surgical Assessment Units (ASAUs) and Injury Units.
Speaking to MI, Prof Garry Courtney, Co-Lead of the HSE National Clinical Programme for Acute Medicine, said it is hoped the system will launch next year following a pilot period in the South/South West Hospital Group.
“When you look at AFIS, you will see who is waiting where and where the long waits are and then you can divert patients accordingly,” Prof Courtney stated.
The concept of an acute floor was first proposed by the Acute Medicine Programme in 2010 and does not exist anywhere else in the world, according to Prof Courtney.
The initiative is being worked on by the HSE Acute Hospital Division and was originally proposed for introduction in Model 3 and Model 4 hospitals.
In a statement, a HSE spokesperson said there remains significant variation in systems, processes and outcomes in managing the patient journey in hospitals and that ways to reduce patient experience times for emergency care are being sought.
“The benefit of an acute floor model is that it further brings patients and senior decision-makers/clinicians closer together and enhances hospital services working collaboratively,” said the spokesperson. “Many emergency departments have information systems that do not appropriately support clinicians and staff to effectively manage patients during their assessment and treatment processes.
“To support the development of the acute floor concept, the HSE has submitted to the Office of the Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO) a business case to put in place a procurement process for an Acute Floor Information System.
“This business case is currently being reviewed by the OGCIO. If approved by the OGCIO, the HSE will advance to the next stage of project planning and put in place the appropriate procurement procedure. As part of the project process, the HSE may also identify candidate sites for implementation.”