SCIT App

Creation
Pending
More Info is needed
Approved
Case Study Summary
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Overview summary:
The Secure Clinical Image Transfer app (SCIT app) was developed at University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHB), and was officially launched at the Trust in February 2017.

The aim of the project was to create a secure app for use on mobile phones, which allows clinicians to take clinical photos in a secure way. The images taken and some identifiable patient data are then stored off the device into the secure UHB network. Once the image has reached the hospital system it automatically attaches the image to patient’s records.
Challenge identified and actions taken :
In 2013 challenges arose concerning the risks of clinical staff using their own mobile devices to photograph patients during out-of-hours and in emergencies when professional medical photographers were not available.

At the same time a ‘Do It Yourself’ camera, managed by the Medical Illustration department, continued to be returned containing images that could not be matched to a patient as standardised operating processes were not being followed correctly.

SCIT was designed to address the issues outlined above, and continues to provide a simple solution. The secure app available for both Apple and Android allows clinicians to take photos of patients and have them immediately stored off their device in a secure UHB network. Once the image is taken SCIT does not allow the image to be viewed on the mobile device and instead clinicians can view images only once they are passed to the Image Management System (IMS) which is accessible via the electronic patient record. Images are never available on the device even if the device is lost or stolen. As the app does not allow any access to the images on mobile devices or independent cloud systems, it therefore conforms to the NHS governance criteria and data protection.
Impacts / outcomes:

The SCIT app is designed to be simple, straightforward and above all safe, and there are many positive outcomes from its development outlined below:
  • The app ensures that when the Medical Illustration team are not available, clinical images can still be taken of patients in a secure manner. It allows clinicians to send images to patient records which can be reviewed by other clinicians via the Clinical Portal
  • The SCIT console gives a real-time view of all user activity, provides a control mechanism to authorise new users, monitors activity, and assesses the quantity of images and data flow

  • SCIT has allowed for faster patient diagnoses and consequently quicker treatment plans
  • The SCIT app is unique as it only allows images to be taken and sent to the patient record system without them being accessible on any device
    • This also makes it ideal to be developed into a patient app to avoid patients sending on their own clinically sensitive images through insecure and unsuitable electronic routes which is occurring regularly, especially in dermatology
  • There is no cloud involved, which means that the image is transmitted directly from the device to a Trust server, therefore making it secure enough for the NHS.
There are many other benefits of adopting the SCIT app:
  • The app can be used on clinicians’ own mobile devices or tablets to securely take and sent clinical images
  • The app works with iOS, Android and Blackberry
  • The app is fast and hassle free
  • The app eliminates the risk of sending un-secured images and protection from large fines for non-compliance on clinical information governance issues
  • Military level encryption means patients’ images are always secure
  • The app streamlines diagnosis, improves efficiency and reduces paperwork
  • The app can be used offline in areas where wifi connectivity is poor
  • The console monitors all activity and provides robust audit trails every time the app is used.
Supporting quote for the innovation from key stakeholders:
Jane Tovey UHB Medical Illustration Services Manager: The SCIT app will enable the NHS to securely capture clinical images and send them direct into the patient’s electronic record. The encrypted data package is monitored to ensure it is delivered to the correct patient notes and all parts of the pathway are safe and auditable.”

Chris Coulson UHB Consultant Ear, Nose and Throat Surgeon: “Whilst we all know that a picture can speak a thousand words, the majority of clinical findings are currently recorded by hand drawn pictures, or by text. The SCIT app will give clinicians the ability to document visual findings using photography, which can then be securely uploaded into the patient records. This will undoubtedly lead to an improvement in patient care, using the cameras on mobile devices most of us carry around every day.”
Which local or national clinical or policy priorities does this innovation address:
The SCIT app has been utilised at UHB and other NHS trusts such as Coventry and Warwick NHS Trust, who purchased the SCIT app in 2017 and have adapted it to link with their secure Wi-Fi network, to provide vital evidence at the most appropriate part in the care pathway. It supports safer working practices, telemedicine, teledermatology, remote community- based working and addresses the current data protection and information governance risks. In addition 30 other organisations are also enquiring about SCIT Version 2, ranging from Dermatologists, Trauma specialists, GPs and the Information Governance groups.
Plans for the future:
We are already in the planning stages of SCIT Version 3, which will include bar-code scanning to speed up patient data entry, the ability to take small video clips and confirmation emails that will hold direct links to the Trust’s IMS. These can only be opened on a secure networked computer within the Trust but could speed up image sharing.
Tips for adoption:
If you would like to learn more about the SCIT app then visit our website and try out the free demo: www.scit.nhs.uk

Or you can simply contact the SCIT administration team on: SCIT@uhb.nhs.uk
Contact for further information:
Contact the SCIT administration team on: SCIT@uhb.nhs.uk
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