Identifying and escalating problems with EMIS

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Londonwide LMCs is working with local and national commissioners to raise issues and push for them to be fully resolved.

Practices have highlighted dissatisfaction with EMIS’ slow systems and freezing. In November, this escalated, and many practices experienced frequent computer crashes with inability to complete routine clinical tasks. EMIS did identify and rectify the main underlying problem but, despite causing clinical care disruption and having a significant impact on ability to work effectively, these issues persisted for weeks and not hours.  

Consequently, we have been working collaboratively with NHS England London, seeking assurances about national and regional escalation routes and to help strengthen processes so that any future events are dealt with rapidly, with communications to keep practices updated. 

At present, in addition to NHS England London having quarterly meetings with EMIS, NHS England London have meetings with the NHS England national team who are responsible for monitoring medical record system suppliers’ performance. The national team has direct access to the nature and number of cases raised by practices via the EMIS helpdesk.  

We would encourage GPs and practice staff to sign into the EMIS online portal and report any problems to the helpdesk.  

In addition to this process, several practices across London have offered to work directly with the regional team to flag swiftly any future dips in EMIS performance.  This will enable NHSEL to have early recognition of problems and their impact, so that they can escalate swiftly.   

There is now a new monthly GP-only working group, that raises performance issue and works with both EMIS and the national team. NHS England London are working with the ICBs to identify at least one GP in every area, to attend and provide feedback. Dr Lisa Harrod-Rothwell, our deputy CEO, will be part of this group on behalf of GPs across London and as a London based EMIS user.  

If you are not happy with how an incident is progressing or has been closed, you can use the Request Escalation option to let NHS England and EMIS know that there are any issues with the way EMIS are dealing with the case. The case will be reopened by a separate team for investigation, and the national NHSE team monitoring KPIs will review the number of escalations. 

If you find that there are persistent/unresolved drops in performance of any medical records system, please do get in touch with us at so that we can address this directly with the NHS England London team and the system suppliers.