• University trains nurses to work in a paperless NHS

Student nurses at the University of Manchester are now being taught how to use ‘e-observation’ tech

nology from the very first weeks of nursing training.

The students are learning how to capture bedside observations on an iPad or tablet as well as on traditional paper charts.

The University of Manchester call this move a “pioneering” step towards changing educational focus to equip the UK’s first generation of paperless nurses.

The system used in Manchester, Patientrack, is one of a number of alert and observation systems in use in UK hospitals, which allow nurses to capture vital signs digitally at the bedside.

They are designed to ensure accurate observations and reduce the burdens placed on nurses, allowing them to dedicate more attention to unwell patients.

Carol Wilde, former A&E matron who is now clinical skills tutor at the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work, said: “As the NHS becomes paperless, we need to give students a real feel for the systems they will use.

“Introducing Patientrack into the classroom was the only way to do this, something no other nursing school has done.”

Wilde posits that updating nursing teaching in the university environment in this way is important as it reflects the realities of 21st Century NHS nursing.