Ongoing DevOps on a Patient Management System

About The Care Database

The Care Database is an established software company operating in the hospice and respite sectors. Their software is a patient management system that revolutionises care management with remote access, improved efficiencies in electronic notes and care planning with an online roster, as well as providing real-time access to NHS patient information. The robust functionality helps to provide safer care for patients.

The challenge

After taking over the management of the application in 2019, we immediately looked at how to improve the way the system was supported. Now to improve functionality we continue with custom software development on a DevOps basis, constantly striving to make better care management possible for the end-users of The Care Database.

The solution

The system was built in M# on .NET MVC by a previous company. We use this source code but now extend it using C# and different Azure services such as Azure File Share, Azure Key Vault and Azure SQL Database. The apps are running on Azure VMs, and API Gateway is used for handling certificates and domain names.

After the initial phase, ongoing DevOps work began. Over the last 3 years, we have undertaken over 70 CRs, improving the functionality of this care software in a number of ways. Here we highlight four of particular note:

  • Review of the reporting functionality – we worked with the team at The Care Database to build a comprehensive reporting tool, giving users the ability to report on all relevant data. This tool is valuable in evidencing the services that the hospice provides and helps to create effective funding applications.
  • Body Map Editor – Following a detailed brief provided by the Care Database, we developed a body map tool that can be adapted into a bespoke body map document with questions designed by the user. The visual body map is easy to annotate and the new functionality has been readily accepted by all users.
  • Form Builder – Updating bedside paperwork was a challenge for users so our team created a bespoke tool that users can use to create their own columns, heading and annotations. This brings more elements of patient care into the secure environment of The Care Database.
  • Azure SSO – Implementing Azure single sign-on has been a huge benefit to the users who can now log in via their own secure Office 365 environment.

And on a technical side:

  • Implemented Azure AD Authentication
  • Transitioned to Azure File Share
  • Transitioned to SendGrid from a Linux mail server

The outcome

Hear directly from the Managing Director of The Care Database on how our ongoing development work is aiding the growth and outcomes of the company and its clients:

How does The Care Database stand out from the competition?

“The Care Database answers an expressed need for care management software designed around complex and extended care provided by hospices and organisations that provide respite and community care to children and their families living with disabilities or life-limiting conditions. We are committed to providing a robust all-in-one care management platform facilitating end-to-end patient referral to care delivery records management.”

Has client usage of the Care Database increased?

“The number of children’s hospices and respite centres is growing annually and we are seeing increased engagement across those who use The Care Database. The introduction of more care planning tools and better reporting increases the engagement of both care staff and administrators who see benefits both to patient care and also to their ability to evidence the care that they provide.”

How has patient care been improved?

“One example is that families can now log into The Care Database to view their child’s care plans before they arrive for a residential stay. This substantially reduces the level of stress caused at admission as much of the reviews have already been done from the comfort of their own home. Both staff and families benefit hugely from this functionality.”

How has the development work of Transparity contributed to your company’s mission and business goals?

“We know that we can discuss any plans with the team at Transparity  and they have the knowledge to advise us of the best ways forward. We know that any brief that we provide will be properly reviewed and discussed before any work goes ahead. The quality of work is always excellent which means that we can plan roadmaps and project timelines without delays caused by rewrites or miscommunication.”

How has Transparity performed from a project management standpoint?

“The Transparity  team immediately handles any bugs through a deployment schedule based on set priorities. The project manager they’ve assigned to us is proactive in suggesting improvements, responsive, compliant with the timelines and priorities we set for every task, and quick at solving any change requirement or issue that arises.

Their team also works closely with us to ensure good communication between their developers and us and ensure we don’t go over budget — they lead a very efficient process.”

"The Transparity team immediately handles any bugs through a deployment schedule based on set priorities. We're delighted with the way they work. I don't think there is anything they can improve upon"

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