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Trust accredited as a Global Digital Exemplar

Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUH) has today received formal accreditation from NHSX as a leading digital trust for completing all the requirements of the Global Digital Exemplar (GDE) programme.

GDE accreditation is given to NHS organisations that deliver improvements to quality of care through the world-class use of digital technologies and information.

Copy of Digital Global Exemplar Certificate
Proud moment - the GDE certificate

In 2017 CUH was nationally selected as a GDE - one of only 17 acute trusts in the country - in recognition of digital advancements resulting in care benefits.

Dr Afzal Chaudhry, head of digital and consultant nephrologist at CUH, said:

The GDE programme enabled us to accelerate use of technology, embedding digital working into everyday clinical care and practice, whilst also assisting other NHS trusts to advance their digital maturity.

Dr Afzal Chaudhry, head of digital and consultant nephrologist

“Our two year GDE programme supported us with initiatives including our implementation of ‘Scan for Safety’ - embedding a practise where clinicians use technology at the bedside to scan barcodes on patient wristbands, medications, expressed human milk, blood and blood products, and specimen collections. All barcodes are linked to our electronic record system to provide an added safety check.”

Zoom shot of CUH team receiving the GDE accreditation certificate .
The CUH team received the accreditation via a Zoom ceremony

The introduction of ground-breaking technologies to create a more joined-up approach to healthcare was also a key part of the Trust’s GDE programme.

Innovative digital links with hospitals across the UK (including neighbouring trusts), international hospitals, and GP practices within the East of England, enable secure and effective sharing of clinical information, benefitting patients and contributing to better outcomes.

Accelerated use of the Trust’s digital MyChart patient portal (now with over 84,000 patient users) also enables patients to be more informed and involved in their care with access to their hospital health record, appointment information and test results automatically released to their My Chart.

Dr Susan Broster, CUH interim executive director of improvement and transformation, said:

To be officially accredited as a Global Digital Exemplar is a fantastic achievement and reflects the exceptional efforts of our digital team in collaboration with clinical staff.

Dr Susan Broster, CUH interim executive director of improvement and transformation

"They have embraced and embedded digital ways of working as part and parcel of everyday care and practice to benefit patients, staff and healthcare partners.”

In 2014 CUH successfully moved away from using paper patient records and introduced fully digital ways of documenting patient care and accessing clinical information.

Today over 99 per cent of all clinical activity across Addenbrooke’s and The Rosie hospitals is recorded within the Trust’s Epic electronic patient record system by clinicians, in real-time, using integrated computers, handheld and mobile devices.

Since completing the GDE programme CUH has continued its digital advancements. In October 2020 it became the first UK trust to achieve Stage 7 of the international Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM) - the highest international quality standard that recognises the use of technology, data and analytics to support the delivery of high quality inpatient care.

NHSX national chief information officer, Sonia Patel, said:

Cambridge University Hospitals has demonstrated the clear benefits of digital transformation in health and care, with technologies like barcoding linked to electronic patient records making care safer for patients, and providing clinicians with the tools they need to do their jobs effectively and efficiently

NHSX national chief information officer Sonia Patel

"The trust has also been a leader in establishing a joined-up approach across health and care providers locally. This ethos of shared learning underpins our ongoing support to frontline digitisation. I congratulate the team at Cambridge, and their local partners, for all their efforts and energy to drive digital transformation in health and care."