Fireside chat with Phil Verplancke

We talk to Phil, Product and ITS Director here at FDB, about Multilex and the future of Clinical Decision Support.

FDB has been working in the UK digital healthcare space for over 35 years, developing Multilex clinical decision support (CDS) since the earliest electronic primary care prescribing solutions were developed in the UK - so this is something that we do really well!


We’ve been working on CDS from the very start of the digitisation of the healthcare industry and over the years, we have worked with our clients to develop our solutions to include ever more enhanced CDS as digital capability has matured. Where we started with simple pick lists, we’ve added core CDS elements (such as interactions, sensitivity checking and contraindications) - and our CDS is ever evolving, so we now have advanced dosing and range checking modules.


We’ve got an amazing team of clinicians and clinical experts who are responsible for researching clinical data and dedicated to managing the quality of this data within Multilex.


We are now in a space where we have highly evolved technology and, off the back of this, we are continuously pushing the boundaries of CDS. With traditional CDS, the principal focus was always on the drug you were going to prescribe. We have put the patient at the heart of the process, so the drug is no longer the focus, resulting in a holistic view of the patient.  The Multilex team are now taking forward the concept of Multilex and CDS into future developments that will help solve some of the challenges facing the NHS and clinical users today and in the future.


When we built our solution FDB OptimiseRx, we effectively tore up the rule book and we put the patient at the heart of everything we do.  OptimiseRx harnesses multiple evidence bases including the data within Multilex CDS, looking at the whole patient medical record and creating a holistic view of the patient’s medical history.  This enables us to run a suite of complex patient centric algorithms to help the clinician make a more informed decision at the point of care.


Multilex remains focussed on clinical safety and continues to support optimal decision-making, so one of our key areas of focus today is to take the holistic patient-centric approach and transfer that into the world of CDS, envisaging what this may look like in the future if we put the patient right at the heart of every decision.


Another area we are currently investigating is pharmacogenomics - the study of how genes affect a person’s response to drugs - again keeping the context of the patient being at the centre of any decision. Today’s technology is the key enabler here – fundamentally this isn’t any more complex than anything we already do at FDB, but the environment required to make it work seamlessly at the point of care isn’t yet as evolved.


We are currently working with a number of stakeholders across the industry and the NHS and we are very happy to explore this further with any interested parties – particularly if you have real world scenarios where you would like to determine how pharmacogenomic decision support could improve patient safety and experience.  We will be keeping you up to speed as we progress with this and other areas of our focus.