By John McCann, Vice President of Global Marketing at BridgeHead Software
It’s now over a month since the annual meeting of the MEDITECH User Network, affectionately known as MUN. MUN is a two-day event that offers an array of conference sessions, workshops, product presentations and demonstrations, networking, and social opportunities for the community to gather and exchange ideas, insights, and best practices. It attracts a range of IT, clinical, and operational staff from NHS and private hospitals across the UK and Ireland, all of whom use the MEDITECH electronic health record (EHR) system. And, from BridgeHead’s perspective, I think it’s the best one yet! Not only was it the first face-to-face event since 2019, but it boasted the largest ever attendance in its long history. The delegates were totally engaged in the wide array of sessions on offer as well as outwardly interacting and supporting the vendors who exhibited, including us.
MUN22 Conference Highlights
It was an eventful couple of days at MUN. A lot happened – too much to list here. So, I thought I would offer a few key highlights that my colleagues and I observed while at the event:
The Winning Session
The winning session for me was delivered by Janice Connolly and Mandy Cain from the Merseyside Society for Deaf People (MSDP). Both Janice and Mandy are profoundly deaf. So, to help communicate with a packed audience, they enlisted the assistance of a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter who was able to translate this fascinating talk. The session really opened my eyes to the need to be inclusive when designing digital technology solutions for all service users and the critical importance of communication throughout. An inspiring, heartfelt and powerful presentation indeed.
Helen Waters, Executive Vice President and COO at MEDITECH Corporation, delivered an insightful and thought-provoking keynote where she discussed the everchanging healthcare landscape, particularly following COVID-19; and MEDITECH’s future vision, which dovetails into global digital transformation initiatives. One thing’s for sure – MEDITECH continue to drive towards their mission to make patient records available not just to providers but also with a view to empower patients to participate in their own care. A laudable goal and one that aligns with BridgeHead’s own ambitions.
Mid Cheshire NHS’ Journey To The Public Cloud
Although I was unable to attend the session, I have it on good authority that Phill James, Digital Clinical System Programme Director at Mid Cheshire NHS Foundation Trust, provided an excellent presentation to a jam-packed audience on the subject of utilising public Cloud Hosting (namely Google Cloud Platform (GCP)). Apparently, Phill expanded on the drivers behind the Trust’s decision to adopt public Cloud as well as exploring the benefits, risks and governance requirements. I’ve heard nothing but good things about this session. I was lucky enough to catch up with Phill over the course of the event – he’s one of healthcare’s true gentlemen.
Derby and Burton NHS Discuss Its Application Retirement Programme
BridgeHead had the privilege of co-presenting a session at MUN with Mark Chester, Head of Digital Technology at University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust (UHDB), on “How to retire applications and surface data within your MEDITECH EHR”. Accompanying Mark was our own Georgina Hurst. Together they discussed how legacy applications are increasing (especially in the NHS as hospitals procure and implement their first or next generation EPRs as part of the Frontline Digitisation initiative). The key challenges they outlined were how can hospitals retire their legacy, replaced and/or duplicate systems (saving cost, time, and resource) whilst still retaining and accessing the patient, clinical and operational data they contain? And what are the risks of not addressing these systems (namely potential security, clinical, operational, and financial risks)? Mark then went on to talk about a project he and his team are working on to retire a number of systems across the Trust, including MEDITECH Magic, iSoft Clinical Manager, Medhost EDIS, and iLAB LIMS. We are currently working with Mark and Georgina to record their presentation so we can share it with those who were unable to make the session.
SuperMatt Connor – MUN Chairperson Extraordinaire
It would be remiss of me to fail to mention that MUN is organised and run by volunteers from individual hospitals in conjunction with the team at MEDITECH UK. Many people are responsible for bringing MUN to life. And to each and everyone involved, BridgeHead would like to say a big thank you. But I also think it’s safe to say that a large reason for the huge success of this year’s MUN event is down to the one and only Matt Connor, Chief Information Officer at Liverpool Women’s NHS Foundation Trust. It’s Matt’s dedication, perspiration, and endurance that made MUN the superb event it was. As he relinquishes the chair, he leaves behind pretty large boots to fill! As an aside, as we were setting up the exhibition stand, Matt came over to say hello and immediately identified the album I had playing on my iPhone in the background – Pink Floyd’s Meddle! Not only has Matt been an excellent Chairman – he also has an impeccable taste in music!
A Strong Presence From The MEDITECH Ecosystem
The MEDITECH partner ecosystem is wide and varied attracting vendors from all parts of the world that contribute to the design, deployment, and support of the MEDITECH EHR as well as those that provide complementary solutions that augment the MEDITECH environment. MUN provides one of the rare events that brings this vendor community together. And it was invaluable for BridgeHead to be able to catch up with our many and varied business partners that make up this ecosystem.
The Unashamed Plug For BridgeHead
There has been a lot of change in healthcare over the last year. We now have the newly formed Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) and Integrated Care Boards (ICBs); the NHS has introduced a new image sharing target by 2023; and organisations continue to drive their digital transformation agendas for frontline digitisation, diagnostics modernisation, and infrastructure improvements. BridgeHead is just shy of 30 years old, is headquartered in the UK (though we have offices in the US) and is 100% dedicated to healthcare. As a result, we are in a strong position to help NHS Trusts, private hospitals, and ICSs and ICBs to:
- Consolidate and leverage data from legacy, duplicate, and/or replaced systems (making that data available to the MEDITECH EHR), then retire those applications – saving time, cost, and resource
- Image-enable the MEDITECH EHR with access to ALL of medical images (radiology, cardiology, pathology and more) to help meet the new image sharing target by 2023
- Move applications, data, and images to the Cloud or Hybrid Cloud
- Ensure MEDITECH and other critical applications are fully protected and recoverable in the event of a cyberattack, outage, corruption, or natural disaster.
If any of these resonate with you, we’d would welcome the opportunity to have an exploratory conversation. Just click the ‘Book a Call or Meeting’ link below and we’ll set up a time to suit.
If you would like to learn more on how BridgeHead can help your initiatives for frontline digitisation, diagnostics modernisation, and/or infrastructure improvements…
Working in tech marketing for almost 30 years, and specifically in health tech for the last 12 years, John has and continues to learn about the real issues faced by healthcare providers and is convinced that technology, when specified and implemented correctly, can be a ‘game changer’ in the delivery of patient care.
At BridgeHead Software, John is working to disrupt the myopia around healthcare applications instead supporting the view that data (and not applications) is the strategic asset by which patient outcomes and experience can be improved.