Web-based system to be introduced for healthcare infection reporting


NHS trusts told to appoint member of staff to oversee switch to digital HCAI reporting

The Department of Health is planning a major shake-up of the process for collecting data on healthcare associated infections (HCAIs) in England.

All chief executives of NHS trusts and foundation trusts have received notification of the proposed changes and are being asked to appoint a member of staff who will lead the changes, which will see the creation of a new web-based surveillance system.

The solution, which is currently being developed, will replace the existing MESS process used to collect mandatory patient-level surveillance data on MRSA, MSSA and E.coli bloodstream infections as well as C.difficile.

Expected to go live in April 2013, it will be faster and have new features, providing users with improved facilities to input and manipulate data more easily. It will also allow users to produce customised tabulated and graphical reports of local, regional and national HCAI data.

To ensure a smooth transition, over the coming weeks NHS trusts have been told to appoint a ‘local implementation lead’, which could be a director of infection control, microbiologist, epidemiologist, infection control nurse, IT manager or other qualified person to lead the changeover.

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More details will be provided later in the summer.