Over the coming months we will highlight some of the work that goes on behind the scenes at SASH to ensure that our patients receive the best care possible. We caught up with Medical Records Clerk, Nalani Ruberoe – one of a team of 65 Medical Records staff who works tirelessly to ensure that patient records are in the right place at the right time for clinic appointments.
Can you explain what you do on a typical day?
I’m an early starter, arriving at 7.30am and finishing at 4.30pm. I spend the morning retrieving files for clinics the following day here at East Surrey Hospital and in Crawley, Horsham and Caterham.
I update the current day’s clinic list and cross check to see if any new patients have been added overnight.
I then prepare patient files for clinic. This involves updating each of them with an audit sheet – which documents a TWR (two week referral), 18 week status, their care pathway and a history sheet for the consultant to complete. As a team we look after 60 scheduled clinics, locating and retrieving around 700 patient records every week. Across all of the teams around 40,000 notes are pulled, located and prepared by our department each month.
Tell us about iFIT and the significance of using the system correctly
iFIT is a patient case note tracking system that is also known as File trail. SASH was the first Trust to use the system in this country and we went live in September 2012. The system allows the Medical Records team to file case notes into bar coded locations within the library areas
iFIT is still reliant on human input. There is a misunderstanding that the scanners around the hospital, ‘track’ notes. This is only partly correct and each file must still be manually tracked to its precise location. It is the responsibility of each individual moving a patient’s file to record its new location.
Every day is a challenge! Sometimes ad-hoc clinics are added and sometimes at very short notice. As a team, we stop what we were doing and rush around retrieving files and locating sets of notes – sometimes all before 9am. It is often a case of all hands on deck! Not being able to locate a file is frustrating, compounded by the fact that this is often due to human error – where it hasn’t been tracked – as opposed to a technological error.
What is the most rewarding part of your role?
To know that I am providing the best service I can to patients and helping them – this is what gives me the greatest sense of satisfaction and fulfilment. If I know that my contribution has helped a patient receive the care and attention they need and deserve – that’s what means the most to me.