An Ilkley man and local GP has set up a business aimed at making life easier for doctors.

Leeds-based Osmosis Innovations was created by three men, including Dr Simon O’Hara from Ilkley, who is a partner at the Chevin Medical Practice in Otley and Bramhope.

Despite only being launched at the end of last year, the business was nominated for start-up company of the year by Medilink and came runner up.

Dr O’Hara created the product along with web development experts Stephen Iball and Martyn Rainford, of Kirkstall-based New Knowledge Directorate (NKD). The software package, entitled Osmosis, is a time saving tool which automatically records daily online research carried out by a GP and safely stores it in one accessible location.

GPs are required to present evidence for an annual appraisal of research, learning and development they have undertaken throughout the year.

A GP must pass annual appraisals over a five-year period if they are to be re-licensed to practice for another five years.

Now when it comes to appraisals, GPs can open their Osmosis account and print out all their research and learning records in a chosen format. Dr O’Hara said: “I enjoy appraising, but not preparing for my own appraisal.

“While struggling to get my documents together, I realised how little valuable online research is actually recorded.

“When I approached NKD with the concept they got it straight away. Essentially it is capturing what would otherwise be lost.

“As you research the information builds up into your own personal ‘wiki’. I use it all the time, often to look up things I’ve seen before and want to refer back to.”

The software has been trialled by 100 GPs nationwide and was officially launched at the Association of Primary Care Educators conference last year. The firm has been selling the products ever since.

Dr O’Hara, a training programme director for the Leeds GP vocational training scheme, approached NKD with the idea of the automatic learning log.

Together with X-Lab, a health software business based at the University of Leeds, they developed the software Mr Iball said: “The feedback has been excellent from GPs, who have cited its user-friendliness as a real strength.”