The importance of standards and the interoperability journey


The importance of standards and the interoperability journey


Date: July 2021

A citizen’s journey across the health and social care system is made up of a multitude of intricate steps and interactions, with a wealth of data to understand and interpret.

The focus of a citizen’s health has often been about illness versus wellness. Considering this duality is important and becomes all-the-more apparent when there is an integrated multi-disciplinary care team working across a system. Both of us can recall experiences whereby we have seen our peers struggling in the middle of a clinical shift trying to piece together a patient’s story. Documented care about patients is often siloed and focuses on the problem recorded on that day and misses holistic assessments across the health and care system.

Through our roles at Cerner and working with our clients and colleagues across the NHS, we can appreciate the power of an integrated care record; sharing data with the right person at the right time, and supporting clinicians and the healthcare team to deliver better outcomes.

Innovation in health and care is flourishing but there are still silos of clinical data that exist in a multitude of applications, systems, products and platforms that the healthcare team, citizens and patients must interact with. We live in an interconnected, information-rich age with the ability to share a wealth of clinical data that is not just beneficial, but often essential for all stakeholders. For this interoperability journey to progress positively, standards are a must and should be at the core. We firmly believe that aligning to and supporting PRSB standards are essential steps to aiding the national interoperability journey and this is why Cerner chose this partnership.

We started working with PRSB on small deliverables, such as workshops and supplier events. We were impressed with the truly multi-disciplinary and inclusive approach that placed the patient at the centre. As we continue to develop and enhance our UK workflows and patient journeys, the importance of aligning to PRSB guidance and recommendations was clear. PRSB represents the Royal Colleges, which provides our end users with a forum to provide valuable input into the design of those standards.

Cerner has worked with the NHS for over 25 years and we are hoping this will enable us to contribute positively to the PRSB partnership through sharing implementation experience, end-user feedback and adoption challenges, as well as potential areas of improvements to consider for future industry standards. Cerner is committed to improving patient experience and health outcomes, enhancing the clinician experience and enabling access to care information for all members of the care team.

As with all our products, content and workflow development, we aim to ensure that data is captured as part of the natural clinical workflow, making our products more intuitive and user friendly. We would like to bring the same ethos to the PRSB partnership, working with PRSB and other partners to ensure standards are not seen as obstacles but as enablers in delivering an integrated and connected citizen, patient and end-user experience.

Cerner overview

At Cerner, we believe in building positive, long-term partnerships that drive value across the health and care landscape. Our intelligent platforms and services connect people, information and care at 27,500+ facilities of all sizes in 35+ countries, and help manage the health of 223 million citizens across the globe.

In the UK, our powerful, open and interoperable Cerner Millennium® EHR platform is utilised by 144,000+ health and care professionals across 24 NHS Trusts to manage 1.5 million patients every month, our Health Information Exchange (HIE) is sharing over 19 million health records, while our population health intelligence platform, HealtheIntent®, is contracted to help clients proactively manage and improve the health of over 9.5 million individuals.


Author information

Andrea Dantas
Director, European Consulting Practice, Cerner

With training as a surgeon and a Master’s degree in International Health Management, Andrea joined Cerner in as a physician executive. She co-created the UK clinical transformation practice in 2008 and has been one of the two clinical leads for the UK Model Experience team since 2017. As one of the directors in the European Consulting Practice, she leads UK healthcare executives as part of the clinical transformation practice, focusing on clinical adoption and executive engagement.

During her time at Cerner, Andrea has driven our clients to the pursuit of value and outcomes through technology. She is considered by her clients as a trusted advisor, helping them shape clinically-driven and outcomes-focused strategic roadmaps for their organisations. As part of the UK Model Experience team, Andrea supported the transformation of our consulting approach to focus on patient journeys, helping further drive the patient to the core of what we do.

Tim James
Senior healthcare executive, Cerner

Tim joined Cerner in 2015 and has been involved in several EHR deployments, as well as working in partnership with multiple CCIO/CNIOs. Having previously worked in the NHS in a clinical informatics role, he is passionate about the development of nurse leaders in digital health and is an active mentor. Tim is also clinical lead and clinical safety officer for Cerner’s Model EHR content and workflows in the UK. He has insight in translating clinical practice into solutions and advising on digital health governance.

In January 2021 he began serving on the Royal College of Nursing e-Health Forum committee and is also a member of the Faculty of Clinical Informatics. Tim continues to work in clinical practice as a paediatric nurse in the NHS.

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