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Queensland Health

Associate Professor John Archdeacon, Director of Anaesthesia, Intensive Care and Perioperative Medicine, Cairns Hospital, ANZCA Bulletin, September 2011

Hospital overview

Queensland Health is responsible for operating and administrating the public health system in the state of Queensland, Australia.

Getz Clinical solutions are used in the majority of Queensland Health’s hospitals in urban, rural and remote locations. These hospitals contain over 90% of Queensland’s public operating theatres, 7,000 beds, and conduct over 150,000 surgical operations per year.

Client: Queensland Health (Public Sector)
Implementation: April 2008
Modules: Induction, IntraOp, PACU, Analytics, Chronology, Remote Assist, Admin
Location: Queensland, Australia  
Operating Theatres: 236
Induction Bays: 94
Post Anaesthetic Care Units: 324
Website: www.health.qld.gov.au

The hospitals’ challenge

Queensland Health’s interest in an automated, electronic anaesthesia information management system began with an initial deployment of early versions of Getz Clinical solutions in Cairns Hospital. With the success of the implementation in the 450 bed Far North Queensland facility, the department identified that the system could provide benefits across their state-wide operations.

Queensland Health requested new trials of Getz Clinical solutions at Princess Alexandra Hospital, where clinicians immediately noticed dramatic improvements in safety and efficiency in operating theatres and recovery rooms.

Over the next three years, day surgery admission rates increased from 82% to 87%. Quantitative studies identified an average reduction in the time it took clinicians to document cases of up to 93% in operating theatres and  93% in post anaesthesia care units (PACU).

After two successful implementations, in late 2009 Queensland Health awarded Getz Clinical the contract to implement the automated anaesthesia record keeping (AARK) project across all its major hospitals.

Our solution

The project was delivered in two stages.

The first stage comprised the installation of the IntraOp, Induction, PACU, Analytics, Chronology  and Remote Assist modules in ten hospitals. These included: Redcliffe Hospital; Caboolture Hospital; Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital; Ipswich Hospital; Toowoomba Hospital; Townsville Hospital; Logan Hospital; Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Hospital; Princess Alexandra Hospital; and Cairns Hospital.

The second stage involved the installation of the same modules in 33 additional hospital sites across the state.

The installation included hardware (touch screen monitors and server infrastructure), professional implementation services, training services, technical support services and configuration. At the conclusion of the rollout, the team had installed modules on 650 clinical personal computers, making it one of the largest integrated hospital health ICT projects in Australia, and Queensland Health’s most successful ICT project to date.

To ensure the implementations  were successful, processes and practices at Queensland Health were required to integrate with our solutions. Interfaces were created to existing services such as pathology, operating room management, hospital information systems and client directory, and the vast array of medical devices in use.

Queensland Health have an excellent enterprise IT platform, and this facilitated delivery of our solutions across the state.

An example is the Queensland Health Client Directory web service, which enabled Getz Clinical to search for and uniquely identify patients even if they had different record numbers at other hospitals.

Once installed, the system operated over multiple sites. Information was therefore accessible to clinicians working at any hospital. It remains the largest perioperative hospital network operating in the world.

Our solutions have benefited rural and remote regions. Senior anaesthetists are able to remotely log in to cases run in operating theatres across the state to support local clinicians.

Queensland Health has noted 'improved clarity, consistency of patient data recording, and access to patient information; the result of which is better patient outcomes and improved clinical decision making and effectiveness'.

Today, data captured by in our modules is being used in various research and administrative improvement projects.

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