New exemplar scheme to drive joined-up delivery of care across the health system
[London, UK] NHS England has invited nine regions to bid for national investment in a drive to create joined-up information capabilities across the health and care system.
Five of these regions will be selected to take part in a new Local Health and Care Record Exemplar (LHCRE) programme, each expected to receive up to £7.5m that will have to be matched locally.
The new exemplar scheme will build on solutions that are already in place and three of them will receive further investment to become digital innovation hubs to support research and innovation and deliver the vision set out in the Life Sciences Industrial Strategy in August last year.
Andy Kinnear, Director of Digital Transformation at NHS South, Central and West Commissioning Support Unit, told BJ-HC at the HIMSS UK Executive Leadership Summit this week that the new initiatives represent ‘recognition at national level’ that more integration around shared records is ‘the right answer’.
“Is it enough money for us all? No. Is it going to cover the whole country? Not yet, but I think this is a really positive first step in showing that actually building shared care records from the ground up is the way to do it,” Kinnear added.
Professor Daniel Ray, NHS Digital Director of Data, told BJ-HC the new programmes, which will overlap despite having different areas of focus, are fundamentally about ‘improving care for patients’.
Bristol’s Connecting Care and Manchester’s Connected Health Cities are some of the projects that have already made significant strides in this area, Professor Ray added, saying that the new investment will ‘get those examples of really good work and spread them in other parts of the country’.
Speaking at the same conference this week, Amy Galea, NHS England Deputy Director of Strategy, said linking data could help the NHS move away from being a ‘collection of organisations’ rather than a ‘national’ service.
Dr Simon Eccles, Health and Care CCIO, said:
“The safe and effective sharing of information between all the organisations caring for someone, within all the correct rules and guidance, will make care far more efficient and less frustrating, indeed sometimes it can be lifesaving if it speeds up diagnosis or stops the wrong treatment being given to a patient.
“A number of areas are already doing this, through Local Health and Care Record Exemplars we want to raise the bar and build on this local work to improve people’s direct care through technology.”