03 July 2017

New PRSB standard for emergency care discharge summaries

The PRSB has published the emergency care discharge summary standard to ensure that vital information is transferred from emergency care to GPs.

Nearly two million people attend emergency care (EC) services each month and sharing discharge information between EC and GP practices is essential for ensuring patient safety and good ongoing treatment.

The EC discharge summary project supports The Keogh Urgent and Emergency Care review, by helping to enable improved discharge from hospital EC departments. The standard also builds upon the emergency care data set (ECDS) project, which has created a new data set for urgent and emergency care services. The ECDS will better support patient care and improve information for commissioners and other secondary purposes including research, audit and service improvement.

What will happen after the standard has been implemented?

• Key information will be transferred directly into the GP record, reducing the risk of transcription errors and improving the quality of information.

• Details on the emergency visit will be available more quickly to the GP practice, and the patient's safety and overall experience will be improved.

• Key information will be standardised, which means it will be available for secondary purposes, such as clinical audit and research.

“The new EC standard will help patients, as it will ensure that the primary care teams have a clear picture of the reason patients attend emergency care and their diagnosis. This will ensure that patients receive the best care for their needs at both a personal and population level," said Dr Tom Hughes, PRSB Advisory Board member for the Royal College of Emergency Medicine.

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