The Government of Wales has announced that it is to develop a new eHealth and care strategy in conjunction with health boards, NHS trusts and local authorities in Wales. The strategy will focus on using technology such as video conferencing, remote monitoring and better use of health records.
In a written statement issued last week while the Welsh Assembly is on its break, the minister for health and social services states that consultation will take place with health and social care professionals and users and the strategy will be in place by the end of the year.
“This will help us achieve our aim of ensuring there are more services, care and support available for patients in their homes or in their local communities” says the statement from Mark Drakeford.
“Technology has a key role to play. This could include the use of video conferencing to allow patients and health professionals to talk to each other; to aid diagnosis and decision making and remote monitoring for people with particular health conditions. Technology can also help improve access to services by bringing them closer to people’s homes, for example by providing mobile services in rural areas.
“With an increasing ageing population it is essential we enable people to live independently for as long as possible. Without this, the health and well-being of individuals will be adversely affected.
“We will expect our information to be accessible to professionals where and when it is needed whether in health or in social care. We already have the Individual Health Record, with appropriate security and governance in place. Any potential wider access to people’s data would only be with their consent.”
The full statement is available on the Welsh Government website here.