Digitising the NHS – One Year On coincides with the one year anniversary of health secretary Jeremy Hunt’s proposal to scrap paper records within in the health service and replace them with digital alternatives entirely in the next four years.
According to the research, the paperless goal is still achievable following previous progress in developing the infrastructure that underpins the NHS.
However, over the past year, TechUK claims the government have simply been laying the foundations for a digital health service rather than moving it forward in terms of frontline health and social care.
“Good progress has been made in regards to planning and allocating the necessary funding for a digital health service; however more is needed in the coming year,” claimed Natalie Bateman, head of health and social care at the firm.
“While it is clear that some NHS providers are well underway in terms of implementing the paperless agenda, the majority are only just starting out on their digital health journey,” she added.
In the report, the organisation recommends six measures to take to accelerate the progress:
· improve the way health and social care professionals are engaged on the design of digital products and services
· maintain investment of private and public funding
· invest more time and resources into raising awareness of the benefits that technology projects deliver
· prioritise improving integrated digitisation where information crosses into either other NHS Trusts or non-NHS partners
· move towards a more mixed digital system economy where suppliers can co-operate with each other to achieve the most effective results
· learn from other industries that have adopted the digital agenda.
“Everyone involved in delivering the agenda needs to work together to ensure there is a step-up in activity that will create a safer and more efficient health and social care service.
“This needs to be based on digital platforms that will transform the system, rather than simply automating tasks,” said Bateman.