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Concern over vaccine IT

GPs in London are to get a new computer system for managing child vaccinations – amid serious concerns that it may not be up to the job.

The NHS is set to commission RiO as the system of choice for London PCTs in a bid to sort out the chaos of the capital's vaccination records.

Problems with transferring records have sent vaccine uptake plunging, to as low as 40 per cent in some PCTs.

But child health experts and GPs warned the system may not be capable of picking up the pieces from the troubled Child Health Interim Application.

Government adviser Professor Brent Taylor, professor of community child health at University College London, said the majority of experts were worried that RiO 'may never be up to the job'.

He said: 'RiO is still a system under development, particularly for child health records. Many clinicians and IT people working in London PCTs have considerable reservations about it being a replacement for CHIA.'

Professor Taylor, who is part of the CHIA options appraisal group that makes recommendations to London PCT chief executives, added: 'London children deserve the best IT systems available, and we would recommend one of the alternatives, at least in the interim, if not for the long-term.'

Dr Kambiz Boomla, a GP in Tower Hamlets, east London, and a member of the City and East London LMC, cautiously welcomed the switch but warn-ed: 'Although the software will be better, the data is still poor.'

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