National health servers

This report from the UK think tank Social Market Foundation considers how technology could be adopted quicker and more widely by the NHS to improve the care that patients receive and to drive better health outcomes. The report’s structure tracks the patient journey, from prevention and diagnosis in the community, into primary and secondary care, through into management of long-term conditions. As well as improving the care experience in primary and secondary care, the report argues that there are huge opportunities to keep patients out of the NHS: prevention of disease can reduce the likelihood of people having to enter hospital care in the first place; better digital management of long-term conditions can help avoid unnecessary readmissions into hospital.

In describing this patient journey, the report charts some of the current shortcomings of in adopting technologies that can improve healthcare and the patient experience. This report reveals that where you live, which commissioner serves you, which GP practice you live near and which hospital you use will dictate whether you receive a digitally-enabled or an outdated service. Levelling out this unwarranted variation without suffocating innovation should be a priority.

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