NI couple's fairytale ending after love blossoms during rollout of new patient digital records system

James’ unforgettable proposal to Rebekah at Disney’s Magic Kingdom
-Credit: (Image: South Eastern HSC Trust)

It was hailed as "a new era" for healthcare in Northern Ireland, allowing staff to instantly access patient records in our local hospitals.

But for one couple it has led to love blossoming and a fairytale happy ending that now sees them preparing to walk down the aisle. This love story of ‘epic’ proportions ignited within the South Eastern Trust during the preparation and launch of the new 'encompass' system of digital patient records.

Pharmacy Super User Rebekah McKinney who works in the South Eastern Trust, and encompass Business Change Pharmacist James Hyde, who works in the Northern Trust met at the Ulster Hospital during their encompass training last year. They worked closely together throughout the period of ‘Go Live’ in November 2023.

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James explained how it was during this time that he and Rebekah, “got chatting more and then started going out in December 2023.” A delighted James continued: “Fast forward a few months and Rebekah and I flew out to Orlando, Florida, to meet with her brother who lives there.”

And he ensured that this was really going to be a trip to remember, as he popped the all-important question to Rebekah in front of one of the most iconic settings in the world – the Magic Kingdom’s Cinderella’s Castle in Disney World!

“Thankfully Rebekah said ‘yes’ and we are planning the fairy tale wedding in December this year. I am originally based within the Northern Trust and took a secondment to come to the South Eastern Trust which I’m so glad I did and now the countdown is on until the wedding!” James said.

An elated Rebekah added: “Encompass has brought many changes in work, but I’m even more excited about the change encompass has brought about to my personal life. James and I are so excited as we continue to plan our wedding and future together in our own happily ever after!”

James and Rebekah pictured at the Ulster Hospital
James and Rebekah pictured at the Ulster Hospital -Credit:South Eastern HSC Trust

After seven years of planning to convert the paper records of patients to digital, the 'encompass' system was officially launched by staff in the South Eastern Trust in November with the remaining health trusts to follow over the next 18-24 months.

Earlier this month, the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust went live with the encompass digital record system, replacing paper processes with a single digital record for each patient. The system means staff will have immediate access to care records, whether patients or service users are in hospital or at home.

The electronic care record for every person in Northern Ireland, underpinned by the Epic electronic patient record system, includes a MyCare portal, which provides patients with access to parts of their medical records, such as medications, appointments and some test results.

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