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encompass - delivering care together


encompass is a Health and Social Care (HSC) wide initiative that will introduce a digital integrated care record to Northern Ireland. This will support the Health and Social Care NI vision to transform health and social care in order to improve patient safety and health outcomes. By working more effectively and efficiently through regional standardisation and best practice it will help create better experiences for those receiving, using and delivering services.

HSCNI currently uses lots of different systems which cannot easily, or just can’t, communicate with each other. Many of them are old and need to be replaced. This gives us an opportunity, rather than continuing to rely on paper records and replacing outdated technology system by system, to better use the investment needed in ICT to transform the way we care for people in Northern Ireland.

Watch our short animation to find out more about the benefits of a new digital care record.

A large amount of work has taken place since 2015 in terms of research, engagement, business case development and procurement. An award of contract was formally issued to Epic, the preferred supplier, in May 2020, following approval of the Full Business Case.

Health Minister, Robin Swann, formally announced the landmark contract award in June 2020. Read the full Department of Health press release.

The contract with Epic is part of an overall investment of £300m over the next decade, which includes investment in the ICT infrastructure required and the central and local teams necessary to deliver and support this significant piece of work.

Who are Epic?

Epic are global leaders, and bring over 40 years of experience of successful implementations at 300+ organisations like HSCNI, both in the UK and around the world.

Epic will deliver a build based on global best practice and their previous NHS implementations.

For more information on visit the Epic website.

Where are we now?

We are currently in pre-work stage. This stage is set to end in September 2021, where we will move into Workflow Walkthrough and Configuration.

The team have been working hard to recruit the high volume of staff needed to configure, build and implement encompass. A large number of staff have joined the team since December 2020, with adaptations made to ensure a smooth on-boarding for staff in the midst of the global pandemic. These team members have been working hard to successfully complete the necessary Epic training, projects and examinations to gain system accreditation in preparation for the configuration and build of the encompass solution.

In addition to recruitment and training, a number of other key tasks and activities are underway in preparation for Workflow Walkthrough and Configuration, relating to the following high level areas:

The following high level timeline outlines the core encompass phases:


Phase: Pre-Work

June 2020-September 2021

Phase: Workflow Walkthrough & Configuration              

September 2021 – April 2022

Phase: User & System Readiness
April 2022 – January 2023

Phase: Training, Go Live & Post Live Support
January 2023 – March 2025

Phase: Optimisation
March 2025 – April 2027