Smart technology introduced to increase the efficiency of hospital porters is on schedule to save Colchester General Hospital £100,000 in its first year.
The system, made by US software company TeleTracking, has helped to reduce average porter response times from about 15 minutes to 11 minutes.
Colchester General Hospital is the only hospital in Essex to use the system and has been visited by staff from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn where it is about to be introduced.
Specialist software prioritises requests for porters and then automatically sends the request to the nearest available porter, who picks up the full details on an iPod.
David Cottrell, service manager for the portering team, said the 60 porters at Colchester General Hospital received an average of 19,000 requests every month.
“The most common requests are to move patients and to transport blood products, specimens and mattresses,” he said.
“We introduced the new system in mid-November last year and are on schedule to save £100,000 in efficiencies in the first 12 months.
“We’ve been really pleased with it and it’s good for patients because they’re now waiting less time for our porters to move them.”
Mr Cottrell said the system had the potential to be tweaked in order to maximise efficiencies. Previously, radio was used to distribute jobs to the porters.