BridgeHead’s Independent Clinical Archive, HealthStore® provides the England and Wales Cricket Board with a central data repository to achieve its vision for a more accessible and data-driven approach to player clinical care

LEATHERHEAD, UK – 27 October 2022 BridgeHead Software, a leader in healthcare data management, today announces that the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), the national governing body for all cricket in England and Wales, has reached a key milestone of half a million medical images securely stored in BridgeHead’s Independent Clinical Archive (ICA), HealthStore®. The first stage of the HealthStore implementation was successfully deployed for the national team back in the Spring of 2018 in order to help clinical staff to quickly collaborate and make informed decisions that safeguard, as well as enhance, player performance.

ECB Realises Its Enterprise Imaging Strategy

The ECB has now been actively using BridgeHead’s HealthStore for four years. HealthStore provides a central, easily accessible and standards-based repository for the ECB’s Sport Science and Medicine team members. The solution can securely consolidate, upload, store, protect, and view first team players’ medical images and associated data – anywhere, anytime, on any approved device.

HealthStore’s functionality also allows the ECB to collate and link players’ imaging data with their medical records, which are stored in The Cricket Squad – a player registration and medical records system from The Sports Office (now part of Kitman Labs). This integration allows clinicians to access a complete medical view of each individual player, all from one place.

The complex nature of sporting injuries requires multi-disciplinary teams (MDTs) to have regular and easy access to clinical data and images to inform accurate and rapid diagnoses, as Professor Nick Peirce MBE, the ECB’s Chief Medical Officer, explains: “The ECB’s clinical team is made up of various specialist medical professionals, including doctors, therapists, strength and conditioning trainers, and sports scientists; as well as a wider network of specialist support, such as radiologists and surgeons. When players are injured, whether at home or on tour, we need to be able to collaborate in real time. At ECB, we now store our players’ medical images, such as MRI and CT scans, in BridgeHead’s HealthStore® clinical repository. HealthStore provides us a central location in the Cloud for our player’s medical data and allows geographically dispersed MDTs to securely access and view images, at a diagnostic quality, wherever they are in the world, to decide on the most suitable medical action.”

ECB Places High Priority On Data Privacy And Security

Not only has HealthStore helped the ECB to eliminate data silos and improve clinical collaboration, but the solution also makes it easier to protect the team’s valuable medical information in the event of corruption, loss, or a data breach. With data now stored in the Cloud, the ECB has removed the need for clinical practitioners to download images to individual laptops or devices, ensuring that privacy and security is not compromised.

Graeme Reid, Head of Technology at ‎the ECB said: “We’re trusted by players to keep sensitive data sets relating to medical records, safeguarding, anti-corruption, and anti-doping information; safe and secure. Historically, sports teams haven’t had access to a centralised system for storing medical images, so those images would persist on removable disks and devices. This presents a significant information security challenge for the teams, where athletes’ medical records are subject to a higher standard of privacy and protection given the sensitivity of the information and the profile of players. Furthermore, the general data protection regulations (GDPR) set out mandates around the way that data should be stored and protected. By investing in technologies, such as BridgeHead’s HealthStore, we’re able to set the highest standards that we can pass down to county boards, driving best practice approaches.”

ECB Leverages Data Living In HealthStore To Inform Clinical Best Practice

Aggregating medical images in this way has also presented clinical benefits, providing a 360-degree view of players’ medical history for enhanced long-term care. With historical data at their fingertips, the ECB’s clinicians can easily analyse injury patterns, such as stress fractures; and develop techniques that reduce damage and set best practice. Here the capabilities of BridgeHead’s HealthStore are enhancing the management and prevention of injuries as well as ensuring players are operating at peak physical health and fitness.

Rob Wilkinson, Technology Project Manager for Elite Applications explains: “These capabilities are invaluable to our Sport Science and Medicine team members as it provides them with real-time and readily accessible medical data. This assists the diagnosis and treatment of injuries but can also help coaching staff to gain a deeper understanding of peak player performance. Ultimately, having access to a central store of player information provides the basis for an increased use of analytics and a greater focus on the wellbeing of elite athletes.”

ECB Deploys BridgeHead’s HealthStore To County Teams

The current phase of the ECB’s HealthStore rollout targets county-level cricket, Rob continues: “After a successful first team rollout, we are now running several counties with the HWA central solution. The COVID-19 pandemic slowed down our progress to further counties so we are now catching up.”

 The governing body is also concurrently speaking to its third-party radiology centres, such as the Fortius Clinic, BUPA, Spire Healthcare, and Nuffield Health; with the aim of granting them access to upload data straight into HealthStore from their bespoke PACS applications rather than sharing images across the network or from DVDs.

“We are honoured to play a significant role in the England and Wales Cricket Board’s long-term plans to create a modern and accessible healthcare data management system,” said Jim Beagle, President and CEO, BridgeHead Software. “The importance of data in elite sports is unquestionable and, as a result of a data-driven approach to the health and wellbeing of its athletes, we’re seeing organisations like the ECB push new standards of integrated care. The availability of real-time data to geographically dispersed multi-disciplinary teams, coupled with comprehensive security and accessibility, not only facilitates better clinical decision-making, but emphasises the importance of joined-up care and gives players that data-driven edge.”