NHS USING DIGITAL SERVICES TO TACKLE HEALTH INEQUALITIES
9 January 2023
Health and social care professionals across Coventry and Warwickshire are using digital technology to tackle health inequalities and improve the health outcomes of the local population.
An electronic data system has been developed to identify local groups of people who have chronic illness or are at risk of ill-health. The system will analyse this information to build a better understanding of people’s health, the circumstances in which they live, their needs, and the type of care they receive. This is known as ‘Population Health Management’.
Over time information will be collected from General Practice, hospitals, mental health providers, community services, social care, and other sources. This will include personal information about people’s care, however only health and social care staff who are directly involved in providing the care will be able to see any patient identifiable information.
Patients will automatically be opted into this system but have the right to object at any time.
Many clinicians and commissioners across the country are already taking a population health approach and thinking differently about how to plan and design care in an integrated way.
This approach follows on from the launch of the Integrated Care Record (ICR), which was created to bring together the various electronic records of a person’s care. The ICR provides health and care professionals with a more joined-up view of people’s care and treatment across all care settings.
Liz Gaulton, Chief Officer of Population Health and Inequalities at NHS Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care System (ICS) said: “We are keen to improve the way that we use digital services to look after our patients. We are working together to ensure there is better digital integration between health and social care organisations across our system. Joining up and analysing this patient information will allow healthcare professionals to make quicker and safer decisions about people’s healthcare.
“Patients should be reassured that their personal information will only be accessed by health and social care staff supporting their care. People can choose whether they want their confidential information to be used to support with their care.”
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