Digital solution helps patients in own home

Hospital in the Home eMeds go-live team (from left) nurse manager Wendy Pietras, eMeds business analyst Wade McKeown, nurse Brian McMillan, nurse Maria Navarro, eMeds pharmacist Michael Ataalla, WSLHD chief medical information officer Dr Naren Gunja, staff specialist Dr Geoff Mifsud, senior pharmacist Carly Pauw, clinical pharmacist Gauri Miszka, nurse Ukti Desai and eMeds design manager Liz Ellankil.

Thousands of patients across Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) are benefiting from a digital upgrade to the way their medications are managed.

The Hospital in the Home (HITH) service is the latest department to receive the eMeds upgrade which has gradually rolled out across the district over recent years.

HITH is a ‘virtual ward’ covering four hospitals in the district: Auburn, Blacktown, Mount Druitt and Westmead.

The service consists of medical, nursing and allied health clinicians who provide home-based care for up to 120 patients at any given time across Western Sydney. That number is expected to continue to increase over the coming years.

Liz Ellankil and Dr Geoff Mifsud watch on registered nurse Brian McMillan uses the new system.

The eMeds upgrade means the treating teams will have faster, paperless access to these patients’ medication charts, according to WSLHD eMeds manager Liz Ellankil.

“Going to eMeds has many benefits for clinicians and patient, including reduced time to hand write and transport charts – giving clinicians more time to focus on patient care, high cost savings with reduced paper use, and increased visibility of medications for everyone involved in the patient’s care across the district,” Liz explained.

Western Sydney is the second district in NSW to go live with eMeds in the HITH service, and it is expected that Nepean-Blue Mountains will be next in 2021.

The team is confident the new digital solution will save plenty of time for HITH staff.

HITH director Dr Geoff Mifsud welcomed the digital upgrade to the vital service.

“Hospital in the Home has been at the forefront of many people’s minds this year. Most COVID-19 patients in Western Sydney have been managed by the Hospital in the Home service,” Geoff said.

“It’s fantastic to have this upgrade to improve our service. Staff will always welcome less time worrying about paperwork and more time focusing on patient care.”

For more information about eMeds in WSLHD, contact Liz Ellankil at liz.ellankil@health.nsw.gov.au.