GP practices across north Wales were thrown into disarray last week when two health care computer systems went offline.
Last Wednesday, some surgeries were unable to access records or blood test results or even book appointments, due to a failure with the EMIS system.
On the same day online communications with GP surgeries were down and some video consultations were unavailable due to a problem with another system, AccuRX, used by some individual GPs and the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board. Surgeries, including Gyffin and Llys Medical Centres in Conwy, put out Facebook posts to alert patients that the AccuRX system was not working.
Adele Gittoes, the health board’s interim executive director said: “The GP clinical system EMIS, which is used by many practices in north Wales, was down nationally yesterday morning for a short period of time. This meant all affected GP practices experienced intermittent access to the system, including access to records, blood results, and were unable to book appointments via the computer system. Where this occurred, practices reverted to their contingency plans, and the issue was resolved by mid-morning on the same day.”
A spokeswoman for Welsh Government said: “AccuRX is not a nationally provided system; it is procured locally by GPs or in some situations by the health board. The Welsh Government does not provide funding directly for the service and has no involvement in the running of the service.”
She added, “It is a tool that some GP surgeries use for patient communications, including video consultation.” It is not known how many GP surgeries or patients were affected.