Until recently, London’s Air Ambulance teams used paper and pens to create checklists of the equipment that had to be placed into each medical bag, and whiteboards to assign those bags to vehicles. The charity needed to find a digital solution that ensured checklists could be created and shared from mobile phones and tablets, giving all medics one view of their operation, wherever they were, at any time of day or night.
“We face a number of challenges in our work, certainly on the clinical side, taking care of patients and providing care at the roadside to critically injured patients is one challenge,” said Mike Christian, Doctor and Research & Clinical Effectiveness Lead with London’s Air Ambulance and Barts Health NHS Trust. “But on a day-to-day basis we also face challenges on the helipad as we strive to be a highly reliable organization.
“We have a number of checklists, which ensure we’re meticulous in all of our preparations for taking care of patients. In the past, this has been all done manually, which has led to a lot of duplication and effort. Today, we’re using the full Microsoft Office suite, including PowerApps to create those checklists. It’s a much better system that’s very easy to use.”
Digital solution more accurate and faster
Using pen, paper and whiteboards to keep track of all equipment wasn’t working for a team that prides itself on speed, agility and accuracy. London’s Air Ambulance needed a digital solution, so they called Intelogy, a Microsoft Gold partner that specializes in helping companies and organizations embrace digital ways of working.
Intelogy came up with the idea of attaching QR codes to every medical bag. Once the code is scanned by a device, the user can log all the equipment in the bag before it’s ready to go out again. That information can also be easily shared with other charity staff or the helipad team, who can support the medics by ordering new equipment for them.
Removing manual processes and duplication
Now, just a few months later, London’s Air Ambulance is building its own Power Apps, as well as utilising Power Automate, which tells a system to automatically perform a task – notify selected medics when a medical bag has been filled, for example – and Power BI for data visualization and reporting.
That’s removing manual processes and duplication. Previously, tasks were recorded in multiple places, which wastes time and can cause confusion among medics who want to restock bags or prepare them for the helicopter or car. Now, they all have one version of the truth, and it’s in their hands, anywhere they go, at any time.