Home » NHS Trust saves up to £3 million in IT costs over 5 years

NHS Trust saves up to £3 million in IT costs over 5 years

17th Oct 23 2:11 pm

 Riverbed®, the leader in unified observability, today announced that The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust (PAHT) has been using the Alluvio Aternity™ Digital Experience Management (DEM) solution for over a year, enjoying significant benefits including improved clinical digital experiences and IT cost reduction.

Riverbed’s solution is deployed across PAHT’s three hospitals: The Princess Alexandra Hospital in Harlow, the Herts and Essex Hospital in Bishop’s Stortford, and St Margaret’s Hospital in Epping.

The Trust serves a local population of around 350,000 people across west Essex and east Hertfordshire. It provides a comprehensive range of general acute, outpatient and diagnostic services. The organisation’s IT team is responsible for delivering excellent digital experience to over 3,700 staff – including doctors, clinicians, community nurses and more.

Since the implementation of Aternity, the Trust has been able to better understand and improve the clinician experience and forge efficient patient pathways. It has also seen a 99% reduction in breaches of Service Level Agreements (SLAs) on service desk tickets,

more automated problem resolutions, and optimised IT spend. The Trust is projected to save £2.5 to £3 million in IT costs over a 5-year period with Alluvio Aternity from Riverbed.

These outcomes are empowering PAHT to deliver on its promise of providing healthcare ‘that its patients deserve, and that makes the organisation proud’ by ‘always holding the patient and their wellbeing at the centre of its thoughts and efforts using up-to-date treatments, technology and facilities.’

Understanding the digital employee experience

Many applications used by PAHT staff were legacy-based due to the age of hospital devices, which made them unreliable, unstable, and unable to run newer software versions or perform updates. The Trust’s clinicians were experiencing 947 hours of lost productivity each quarter due to blue screens across devices, issues with applications, and PCs running slowly. These problems would often go unreported.

Jeffrey Wood, Deputy Director of ICT at The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust, explains: ‘‘Alluvio Aternity from Riverbed is able to highlight where our real issues are. We’re now able to work on the areas that need improving and have a true understanding of the end-user experience. We’ve gained almost 700 hours quarterly in terms of productivity, which is around 28 days per month that we’re effectively giving back to clinicians for patient care.”

On top of pinpointing exact problems, the IT team can now proactively fix issues before a clinician even notices. Wood continues, “In January 2023, we had 1,308 open tickets with 629 overdue. By May 2023, with more actionable insights and automation, the IT team had 628 open tickets with zero overdue. We’ve greatly reduced service desk tickets, which results in an improved user experience and increased levels of productivity.”

Reducing IT spend by reconsidering hardware replacement

The Trust’s newfound visibility has given staff a clear direction on where to spend money by optimising hardware replacement based on performance rather than age. This allows funds to be allocated to other vital improvements in patient care. Furthermore, Alluvio Aternity enables the Trust’s IT team to deliver insight-driven automated remediations that resolve the most common device and user issues.

‘‘Aside from giving clinicians time back, Alluvio Aternity has given IT staff time back. Basic fixes can now be automated, which means my team can spend time on things that really matter,” says Wood.

Unleashing data-driven decision-making

In addition to improving PAHT’s own IT services, Aternity has facilitated the gathering of data that can be used to improve the performance of solutions from third-party suppliers. For example, some applications were experiencing crashes and long hangs. The Trust is now working with these application providers to rectify this, as it can share real-time analytics and actionable insights with them.

PAHT is also trialling Windows-based bio-mechanical equipment. Aternity is helping the Trust see how often its current machines are being used, giving staff the opportunity to make adjustments such as increasing or decreasing equipment, and testing new technologies where they are needed most.

Building a more sustainable Trust

The Aternity DEM solution is also providing the hospital with environmental insights to promote sustainable IT practices. The IT team plans to extend Aternity to its Apple device estate to gather performance data and receive alerts when refresh policies are due. With its sustainability goals front-of-mind, PAHT has been able to use data to reduce its carbon footprint and decrease its electricity bills by shutting down idle devices.

“Our system for detecting issues is much more proactive and automated thanks to Riverbed’s Alluvio Aternity,” Wood concludes. “With their comprehensive DEM solution, we now have access to the tools we need to not only detect but also resolve user issues much more quickly.”

John Atkinson, Director Solutions Engineering, UK&I at Riverbed, adds: “We’re proud to support PAHT in delivering the world-leading healthcare services its patients deserve. We have enabled the Trust to have a single source of truth for its clinician experience, greatly improving the performance of their digital services, whilst simultaneously reducing their IT spend. We look forward to our future partnership with the Trust, helping ensure they continue to deliver an optimal service for their patients, as they leverage the unique insight from Riverbed’s Alluvio Unified Observability suite to drive improved healthcare outcomes and efficiency of service.”

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