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Whole Hospital Information System (WHIS)

About Camp Bastion

Camp Bastion is the main British military base in Afghanistan. With 21,000 people calling it home, including Americans, Danes and Estonians, it is the largest British overseas military camp built since World War II.

Since 2003, the medical facility in Camp Bastion has been providing care for sick and wounded UK military personnel, members of the Afghan National Army and Police force, international troops and injured civilians. Although most patients admitted to the medical facility are combat casualties, the hospital also accommodates more routine procedures like appendicitis, diarrhea, dehydration, hyperthermia and hypothermia.

The facility has over 50 beds and an Intensive Care Unit. Military admissions are short-term, with patients normally transferred back to national facilities within 72 hours but Afghan nationals may stay longer.

What Camp Bastion needed

Camp Bastion is in the middle of a remote foreign country and is essential to the success of operations in Helmand Province. Wounds and diseases are a real threat to the troops operating in Afghanistan and medical care needs to be a top priority, to ensure that anyone wounded or sick can return to the field, as soon as possible.

They needed efficient software to support their activities, including patient administration and electronic patient record systems. There was a drive to improve basic administration functions, focusing on the patient needs. The demands on the current systems were becoming too high and new systems were needed to cope with the increased requirements of the camp.

The challenge

Camp Bastion needed an efficient IT system that supported the doctors in their work, while securing and managing patient data. The system needed to be easy to use as the hospital staff work under great pressure and are rotated every three or six months. Training was a crucial requirement to ensure that the staff were able to use the Whole Hospital Information System (WHIS) effectively.

The system needed to be useable by all medical staff, including foreign doctors who may not have had much training in the applications. Given that many situations are time critical, the system must be up-to-date, flexible and must provide the necessary information quickly. The information system had to be exceptionally robust and capable of coping with the high levels of demand.

Our answer

The UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) appointed CGI to deliver WHIS under the most challenging conditions at the Camp Bastion field hospital in Helmand Province. We ran a competitive procurement for the MoD, as a result of which System C was appointed to provide its award-winning Medway PAS/EPR software. CGI acted as the prime systems integrator and contractor for the project.

The Medway PAS/EPR software was tailored to meet the needs of the MoD. The scope of WHIS includes bed management, intensive care, order communications and reporting systems to supplement the hospital systems. We also provided pre-deployment training and support for operational medics and nurses, both in the UK and in Afghanistan. This prepares the new staff to work efficiently from the first day.

We achieved this within four months and initial operational capability was declared in January 2011. For full operational capability we integrated WHIS with other medical applications already installed at Camp Bastion to provide further clinical support. This was completed in Jan 2012. This will ensure that the MoD continues to provide the best treatment to UK military personnel and its NATO allies based in Afghanistan.

A sucess story

We successfully delivered the new IT healthcare system to support the UK military and NATO personnel being treated in the Camp Bastion field hospital. The custom built software allows the camp to have tailored solutions to their problems, ensuring efficient work. The drive to improve basic administration functions was supported by this software.

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