Liverpool Women's NHS Trust hopes to transform the delivery of its patient-facing service from a paper-based to a digital information system, with CIO David Walliker believing it is the "best solution" for the hospital.

CIO Walliker decided to partner with Alfresco  in order to improve patient health care. The system offers access to patients' medical data when they make contact over the telephone, meaning 80% of patients do not need hospital treatment with nurses providing appropriate advice over the phone. (See also: Yeovil Hospital NHS Trust aims to go paperless to improve patient care and save up to £27.5 million)

"We will be paperless by 2018" Walliker said, improving the health strategy of a faster and efficient health process by "enabling us to remove those pieces of paper outside the medical records".

The project has taken two years from business plan to approval with the design and planning taking six months. Project manager Toni Mairs, who is currently leading the digital transformation at Liverpool Women's Hospital, believes the method will be much quicker for those who need to attend the emergency room.

She said that the medical information will go electronically to the reception staff with patients only needing to "state their name" on arrival. The process will enable medical professionals to share documents from any device with easy access becoming a "quite streamlined" process for the nurses.

Alfresco was selected as an ECM (enterprise content management) solution improving access to medical documents.Walliker believes the product was "quick to develop" and is making a "positive impact on the initial hospital strategy", taking the team's "productivity and decision-making capabilities to the next level".

Going paperless: Open Source project

He continues: "As an Open Source product, it delivered all the APIs we needed to needed to support integrate to with Microsoft Exchange existing file systems and Citrix ShareFile – which we utilise to support external document sharing with partners – and eradicated complex and expensive licensing issues."

The usability of the product impacted on the overall decision, with Alfresco having a simple user interface and the functionality of logging on, meaning no teaching is needed.

CCIO Drake Parkinson of the Liverpool Women's hospital wanted to make sure the development was "clinically driven rather than IT driven".

He continues: "Clinical teams are very excited and are keen to get the forms going in as many departments as possible improving the day to day work, patient experience and quality of patient care."

The project will save operational costs for the Trust and offer significant efficiency developments with Alfresco set to deliver ROI within one year. (See also: Chief Clinical Information Officer job description and salary)

Liverpool Women's NHS Foundation Trust is now preparing to roll out Alfresco to selected user groups in the forthcoming months - renovating the medical work environment beyond enterprise boundaries.