techUK has launched a Life Sciences workstream, bringing together members actively working in drug discovery, digital therapeutics, data and AI, or those interested in moving into this space. As the Life Sciences sector looks to introduce digital health technologies into its portfolio, techUK are shaping the conversation.
Event round-up: What can we learn from Integrated Care Boards' five-year forward plans?
techUK was pleased to welcome Alice Inch, Director, and Erlandas Kazak, Senior Account Executive from WA Communications to an industry briefing on 6 December.
Alice and Erlandas presented WA Communications’ digital map which comprises an in-depth analysis of every five-year forward plan for 40 of 42 Integrated Care Boards (ICBs). The map analyses 27 focus areas including different diseases (such as mental health, oncology, cardiovascular disease and diabetes) and cost-cutting priorities (such as digital and data, social care and workforce) to understand the level of prioritisation an ICB has given to each topic.
Erlandas summarised findings from digital and data deep-dive, including:
Digital and data is a nationwide priority, and with regional strategic alignment in many areas
Several ICBs plan to publish standalone digital strategies, including Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes; Herefordshire and Worcestershire; Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and Gloucestershire
There is a huge breadth of types of technology which ICBs examine, such as Electronic Patient Records, cloud software and remote monitoring tools.
Challenges to innovation included lack of reliable infrastructure, scaling pilots, funding challenges and training staff to use new technologies.
Common themes across the 40 ICB plans were often linked to national priorities, including:
90% of plans dedicate a whole section to cancer
65% of plans dedicate a whole section to cardiovascular disease
Health inequalities feature in 98% of plans
Alice also highlighted trends across Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) in terms of their strategic approach, with some ICSs working across multi-ICB structures regionally. There is strong recognition of the potential of digital, but variation remains, and the anticipated General Election in 2024 will undoubtedly impact the strategies set by ICSs.
The Q&A discussion covered a variety of topics including:
Prevention and digital inclusion
Plans to review the data map going forwards
Health and Social Care Programme
With health and care systems around the globe facing increasing pressures, the use of digital technology has never been more important. Supporting a vibrant ecosystem with the potential to become a world leader, techUK is helping its members navigate the complex space of digital health and care in the UK and ensure our NHS is prepared for the challenges of the future.
The Interoperability Working Group will work towards achieving the vision set out in NHS England’s 2022 draft standards and interoperability strategy. The group will aim to encourage the adoption of open standards and fluidity of data whilst recognising the commercial needs of members. It will also focus on demonstrating the value of interoperability to NHS senior management and improving the abilities of SMEs to implement interoperability standards.
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