Statement from Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust - GP Letters
Wednesday 9 August 2017
Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust has become aware of an issue with its computer system which has led to a backlog of 22,000 letters which should have been sent to GPs about their patients when they had attended its hospitals for outpatient appointments or to hospital departments if follow up care was required. These date from 2011 to 2017 and was not in relation to a third party software provider.
The Trust has completed an initial review of these letters and has found 11,000 of these required no further medical action. The focus now, is to urgently review the remaining 11,000 letters.
Michelle McKay, Chief Executive said: “We are sorry that some letters within the Trust’s document management system have not been processed properly. We regret that this means some patients may not have received the follow-up care they should have. We are working closely with our primary care colleagues and partner health organisations to urgently review the individual cases of these patients and to ensure, where appropriate, patients receive the necessary follow-up care quickly.
“An investigation is underway to understand how this has happened, so we can put systems in place to avoid it happening again.
“This is a serious issue which we are working hard to quickly address, however it is important we reassure our local communities that more than half a million patients are seen in our outpatient departments each year and the vast majority of these patients will have had the appropriate letters sent to ensure they receive the right follow-up care.”
The Trust is currently working with general practices to review the outdated letters and we anticipate that this will be completed by the end of September. If any evidence emerges over the forthcoming weeks that any impact on patient care is found, the Trust will contact patients who have been adversely affected.
This was not in relation to a third party software provider.
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