There are some exciting developments afoot in maternity services at Ashford and St. Peter’s Hospitals with the launch of a new electronic medical record system known as BadgerNet. This will replace the traditional folder of handheld notes used by pregnant women and mean everything is securely stored electronically and available at the touch of a button.
Clinical Midwifery Manager, Louise Emmett, explains: “Pregnancy and birth can be unpredictable, so in a different way to other health services women need constant access to their maternity notes; hence the traditional practice of carrying a handwritten set around in a folder. Relying on a single set of notes, however, carries obvious risk of damage or loss so moving to an electronic system is much more reliable.”
BadgerNet can be accessed by computer or mobile app, by both the woman and healthcare professionals looking after her at any time. It also means that notes are consistently legible, as not reliant on handwriting, and everything can be automatically duplicated (onto test forms etc.) so midwives don’t have to write the same information out several times. It is initially being used in November by the community midwifery team, for women in the early stages of pregnancy booking their antenatal care with Ashford and St. Peter’s Hospitals and will be gradually rolled out to other services (labour, post-natal care etc.) in the coming months.
Louise adds; “BadgerNet will definitely make our processes more efficient and longer term is part of a wider project to join up maternity services across West Surrey. We are working with Royal Surrey County Hospital and Epsom Hospital as part of the Surrey Heartlands Better Births initiative; and they are also planning to move to electronic systems. Next year we hope to join these systems up so we can provide better continuity of care for women and their babies across the region.”