Assessments hit by inadequate IT.

Poor IT infrastructure at primary care trusts is hampering
implementation of the single assessment process for older people, a
survey has revealed.

The study of PCTs and strategic health authorities by Liberal
Democrat MP Sandra Gidley also highlights problems and missed
targets in implementing the National Service Framework for Older

There have been concerns for more than a year over the robustness
of the IT systems. Gidley’s report finds that many PCTs cited this
as a reason for failing to introduce the single assessment process
by the April target.

Forty-three per cent of PCTs failed to meet the April 2004
milestone for every GP practice to use agreed protocols to treat
and care for dementia patients; and 18 per cent of strategic
authorities failed to ensure health improvement plans included the
development of mental health services for older people.

Nearly half of PCTs were unable to provide information on
medication review. Of those that could, 35 per cent failed to meet
the target to review the medication of over-75s each year and 28
per cent failed to do six-monthly reviews of people on four or more

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