Digital transformation and the NHS Long Term Plan

NHS staff working on a computer

The NHS faces unprecedented demand. Harnessing the power of technology and data is vital to meet this challenge, ensuring we have a national health service which meets everyone’s needs, is accessible and is sustainable for future generations.

The NHS’s vision for the future is of a fully integrated health and care system, where digital tools and services support people to take responsibility for managing their own health.

While the NHS has offered online health information to people for over a decade, new digital tools and technology are changing how we interact with NHS services. The new NHS App is one solution that will give people safe, secure and simplified access to NHS services online. As more GP surgeries across England connect with the new app, people will gain among other things, a consistent, digital means of access to NHS 111 online, booking GP appointments, ordering repeat prescriptions, viewing their medical records, and registering for organ donation.

Digital tools, including online consultations, will help NHS staff increase time spent with patients and reduce time on paperwork.

Digital transformation – our key commitments

  • Create digital access to NHS services and digital tools
  • Help patients manage their own health and the interaction they have with the NHS
  • Protect patients’ privacy and give them control over their medical records
  • Give every patient in England access to a digital GP offer by 2023/24
  • Ensure that clinicians can access complete digital patient records, wherever they are
  • Enable clinicians to use digital tools to enhance decision-making and patient care
  • Mandate standards to ensure data is interoperable and accessible, and improve cybersecurity
  • Make the NHS a more satisfying place for staff to work, freeing them up from routine administration tasks and enabling them to spend more time with patients.

Case study

Mums-to-be benefit from real-time access to their maternity records, as well as blood test results, appointment reminders and information on antenatal classes, using BadgerNet Maternity Notes App at Gateshead Health NHS Trust.

It allows expectant mothers to add their preferred birth plan, any allergies or other relevant health information before appointments.

It also provides a valuable resource for clinicians who have all the information they need to make the best decisions for the women in their care.

The app cuts paperwork, saving the trust over 400 hours of staff time a year.

Upgrades will also enable the adding of photos and diary entries, creating lasting memories for mothers of their pregnancy and baby’s journey.

Take a look at other digital case studies.