Major new report on digital technology

New plans to improve health outcomes and the quality of patient care through digital technology and innovation have been unveiled by national health and social care organisations on 13 November 2014.

Established by the Department of Health and chaired by NHS England’s National Director for Patients and Information, Tim Kelsey, the National Information Board has set out a vision for how technology should work harder and better for patients and citizens by 2020.

The vision commits to giving everybody online access to their GP records, viewed through approved apps and digital platforms, by 2015.

GP practices are well on their way to achieving this but national leaders want to offer people access to all of their health records – held by hospitals, community, mental health and social care services – by 2018.

In just 4 years, every citizen will be able to access their health records at the click of a button, detailing every visit to the GP and hospital, every prescription, test results, and adverse reactions and allergies to drugs. Patients will also be able to record their preferences and thoughts alongside official medical notes.

The alliance will establish a national digital standard for people at the end of life – building on the success of Co-ordinate My Care in London – so their care preferences are respected. The digitisation of the Personal Child Health Record (the red book) will offer new mothers personalised mobile care records for their child.

Secretary of State Jeremy Hunt said:

‘I want the NHS to be a world class showcase of what innovation can achieve. Today’s plan sets out how we can give patients 21st century, personalised healthcare.’

Tim Kelsey, National Informatics Director, said:

‘New mothers will now be able to carry their red book around with them on their smart phone and tablet as the NHS moves towards offering digital Personal Child Health Records. This will put an end to worrying about leaving your child’s information at home when going for a review, vaccination, or emergency treatment.’

‘We must embrace modern technology to help us lead healthier lives, and if we want - to take more control when are ill.’

‘Our ambition is to make the NHS a digital pioneer for our patients and citizens.’

The framework sets out how real time data will be available to paramedics, doctors and nurses, ensuring patients receive safe and effective at the point of care. All NHS funded care services are expected to have digital and interoperable systems that remove the limitations of paper records and slow bureaucratic systems by 2020.

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