A few short topical items: NHS Digital, DHACA, IET, more

Rob Shaw, NHS Digital’s Deputy CEO, gave a welcome talk at EHI Live on Tuesday encouraging the NHS organisations to become “intelligent” customers. To quote “We have got to make it easier for suppliers to sell into health and social care”. Let’s hope that the message is received and acted on! Until it is, the Kent Surrey and Sussex AHSN is offering help to SMEs to make that first sales – how to book, and to get more details on the event on 23rd November go here.

DHACA’s Digital Health Safety event, in partnership with Digital Health.London on 7th November is proving extremely popular, to the point where it may be oversubscribed soon, so if you want a seat for this really important event for all digital health developers and suppliers, book now.

The IET is running a TechStyle event on the evening of 22 November entitled the world of wearables aimed at people “between 14 and 114”. For today only (1 November) they are offering a special “2 for 1” deal making the already tiny cost essentially insignificant. Book here.  Hat tip to Prof Mike Short.

Prof Short has also highlighted a recent report from Agilysis looking at the role digital technology can play in delivering the vital step change our nation’s care services need. It concluded that: 

  • Leading digital professionals say lack of digital skills biggest risk to transforming care services fit for the 21st century;
  • Lack of knowledge of digital tools is largely responsible for delays in embracing new ways of working;
  • Believe digital technology could cut costs associated with social care delivery and therefore address the number one issue affecting UK social care today;
  • Digital technology can help local authorities manage both demand (improved customer satisfaction) and supply (improves multi-agency working).

There’s a great infographic giving more detail too.

An interesting paper from the December 2016 Harvard Business Review has just been offered for free, entitled Healthcare Needs Real Competition. Sure its focus is on the US system, exploring in the main why competition hasn’t reduced costs and why mergers between providers often increase costs. The authors though reckon that things are changing, driven in part at least by patients: “For many providers, though, keeping peace with internal stakeholders (particularly physicians) often takes precedence. But it’s only when organizations prioritize patient welfare that they can improve and compete on value.” Some useful messages for the UK in there.

The Royal Society of Medicine has published the programme for their sixth annual mHealth Apps conference on 19th April 2018. Booking is now open and earlybird tickets are especially reasonably priced. The programme includes all the key UK players – NICE, MHRA, NHS Digital and the app assessors – plus the ‘regulars’ like Dr Richard Brady of ‘bad apps’ fame, Prof Jeremy Wyatt the expert on app evaluation, and Julian Hitchcock the all-knowing lawyer specialising in this area, coupled with some exciting new speakers like Justin Walters who tells a moving story of how his father’s diabetes inspired him to develop a world-beating app, and Lorin Gresser on building a clinician-facing diagnosis app. Another sellout looms. (Disclosure: this editor built the programme, and also runs DHACA.)

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