The face of frontline patient care is changing in the UK. Statistics released by NHS Digital earlier this month showed the rise of the 'mega GP practice'. Over one in four practices now has a patient list of more than 10,000 patients. The proportion of surgeries with such list sizes has risen by 27% since 2013. And some practices struggle with more than 20,000 cases on their books.

This trend has two main causes. For some surgeries, increasing list numbers are due to practices merging and pooling their resources. However, almost 700 practices have closed in five years. Moreover, an extra 2.6 million patients have reportedly registered in the last four years, while funding and staffing levels have not kept pace.

With these larger caseloads come ancillary concerns. Practices have to be physically larger or multi-centred. It becomes more difficult to ensure continuity of care, as there are larger numbers of staff who may deal with each individual patient. And this can cause problems accessing patient records efficiently, let alone finding the space to store them.

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CAS can store patient records securely off-site

With years of experience, CAS is a specialist in complex archive storage, including medical records storage. Storing medical records securely off-site in CAS warehouses is cost-effective, as it frees up space at GP surgeries. Whether it’s a digital or hard copy, all documents are stored in high-security, fire-proofed warehousing.

If GP surgeries choose off-site storage with CAS, they can still fulfil obligations set out by the health sector regulator, the Care Quality Commission (CQC). CAS’s professional document handling teams provide peace of mind that our services comply with the 2014 NHS England Confidentiality Policy. CAS is an ISO certified provider with industry-leading accreditation, which should assure GP practices that we can provide the highest standards of secure document storage.

Efficient file storage and retrieval for Mega GP practice

Thanks to our Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) and live-file storage systems, our medical records storage service is also highly efficient. CAS deploys state-of-the-art RFID to individually bar-code and scan storage boxes across all our storage facilities. RFID is one of the most advanced systems to track clients’ documents and provides new levels of accuracy and efficiency far beyond standard barcode management. RFID systems support UK and EU data protection regulations, while RFID asset tracking means faster, more cost-effective report generation. It also enables comprehensive audits to be performed in close to real-time, and a secure audit trail of all clients’ transactions.

With our fully hosted live-file storage system, records that are in constant use can be retrieved, updated and returned to storage 24/7. CAS’s online file storage system comes with customised search criteria that enables authorised personnel to access records remotely from anywhere in the UK. This is facilitated through an advanced and totally secure, password-protected online portal.

Expertise and experience in the medical sector

You can read our case study on our work with Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust. This involved relocating and digitising over 20,000 confidential client health care files, which has enabled primary care staff to deliver increased support to children and young people.

To find out more about our medical records and live file storage services, contact one of the CAS team today.

About CAS document storage and management

CAS provides comprehensive and secure document storage and management, scan on demand, and facilities management services. For more than 20 years CAS have worked with NHS Trusts, Financial Services providers, and corporate and private clients. Our head office is just four miles from the City of London, supported by our advanced storage centres across the UK. CAS has an impressive array of International certifications (ISOs), which prove our compliance with the strictest national, European and international laws. They also demonstrate our commitment to provide innovative systems on security, confidentiality and quality control in keeping your files safe and well managed.

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