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Peverley is wrong about care records

For the first time in my life, I find myself in disagreement with Phil Peverley.

(Peverley: Seeing votes in patient notes)

I am the clinical lead for MedOCC, one of three pilot out-of-hours organisations for the Summary Care Record. We have been using the care record since August 2009, and I know of several examples where it has provided vital, potentially life-saving information.

In one case, it was possible to determine the correct type and dose of insulin needed for an unconscious diabetes patient. In another, an elderly man who had repeatedly denied any drug allergies was found to have had such a severe anaphylactic reaction to penicillin previously that he had been prescribed an Epipen – and our clinician was about to give him amoxycillin.

Yes, the care record is potentially open to abuse. But in my opinion, the backlash against it is misguided and unfair. GPs such as Dr Peverley trust us to take responsibility to care for their patients for 70% of the time – yet deprive us of the information we need to do so as safely as possible.

The day will surely come when GPs who rail against the Summary Care Record are seen as unenlightened Luddites.

From Dr Simon Collins
Sittingbourne, Kent