The NHS Commissioning Board should have plans in place for all patients to have an integrated electronic record of their care that can follow them to any part of the NHS or social care system, by 2015.
The government mandate to the NHS CB, published today, says the board should promote the implementation of electronic records in all health and care settings and set national information standards to support integration.
By March 2015, “clear plans will be in place to enable secure linking of these electronic health and care records wherever they are held, so there is as complete a record as possible of the care someone receives.”
Plans will also be in place for those records to be able to follow individuals, with their consent, to any part of the NHS or social care system.
Health secretary Jeremy Hunt said this will not be achieved by imposing a single IT system.
Instead, national director for patients and information Tim Kelsey will be "making sure the systems all have a level of interoperability built into them so they can all talk to each other across the country."
“This will be an incredible step forward in terms of clinical safety and improving care, but how that happens will be different in different parts of the country,” said Hunt.
The mandate repeatedly highlights the need to embrace technology in order for the NHS CB to achieve its aims.
“In a digital age, it is crucial that the NHS not only operates at the limits of medical science, but also increasingly at the forefront of new technologies,” it says.
“The board’s objective is to achieve a significant increase in the use of technology to help people manage their health and care.”
The mandate repeats the government pledge that all patients who wish to will be able to get online access to their own health records held by their GP by 2015.
Everyone should be able to book GP appointments and order repeat prescriptions online as well as have “secure electronic communication with their GP practice, with the option of e-consultations becoming much more widely available.”
NHS chief executive Sir David Nicholson said GPs should not wait for further instructions from the centre, but “get on with it.”
When asked whether GPs could expect extra funding to help get these IT systems in place, he responded that this will be a matter for the board and local CCGs to work out.
In response to a question from eHealth Insider, Sir David acknowledged that there is a need to define what exactly is meant by “online access to their own health records held by the GP.”
However, he said the board is “not interested in a box-ticking approach”, but rather wants to get something that is useful to patients and will engage with patients regarding this.
Sir David also talked about the new ‘customer service platform’ being built by the NHS CB, which he called the “daughter of NHS Choices.”
Bob Gann, director of partnership and strategy at the NHS CB, told EHI Live 2012 that this would be a way for the public to engage with the NHS including feeding back about care experiences and booking appointments.
Sir David said NHS Choices has been “remarkably successful” but the NHS is moving towards a “completely different place” including integration with social care services and needs a "proper platform for patients" that integrates these different strands.
The mandate also says that significant progress will be made towards 3m people with long-term conditions being able to benefit from telehealth and telecare by 2017.
This will support them to manage their condition at home and reduce avoidable GP and hospital visits, it adds.
© 2012 EHealth Media.
if onlyjust_instantiate 67 weeks ago
If, last time around, we'd adopted the principle of "making sure the systems all have a level of interoperability built into them so they can all talk to each other across the country", by now, ten years later, we may actually have achieved it. Ten years away is probably where we are now, but the pressure to do it in three is likely to mean that in 2015 (make that 2018), we'll still be ten years away.
Standards?RichardM 68 weeks ago
A little alarming that Sir David Nicholson said GPs should not wait for further instructions from the centre, but 'get on with it.'
Sounds like a recipe for GP's to buy modules from their favourite GP system provider and then expect everyone else to fall in line, with little incentive for the system provider to stick to any industry standards.
True interoperability MUST be built on agreed standards, not commercial muscle. Isn't that why CfH failed?
It's worse than thatGeepsi 68 weeks ago
Practices like mine are getting a mixed and confusing message (ie situation normal)
We should 'get on with' introducing a system. But the scope of the system is yet to be defined and we are told of new portals etc. So, how do we know what to introduce?
Having gone through introducing online appointments--and as we work towards online repeats-- we are very aware of the workload in simply signing patients up. The last thing we want to do is to introduce something, only for us to repeat the process a couple of years later.
Add in the uncertainty over funding for the changes--remember all funding for IT was taken out of GP practice funding in 2003 so we should not be expected to fund new systems--and the net effect may be a slowing of introduction of these systems by practices until things become clearer.
...maybe we might hear something today.Phoenix 68 weeks ago
This is all valid and worrying comment. Some would say that Informatics is now fully under control. Others would say we are far from it.
Maybe we might get to hear something today with the apparent planned announcements around GP IT responsibility and the NHS CB. And there again maybe not.
Clarification pleasejust_instantiate 68 weeks ago
Hang on, so by March 2015, will I be able to access my health records on-line? ... or by that date will the plans be in place so that I can at some date thereafter? ... and how thereafter will that be?
Both or neitherJacquesOuze 68 weeks ago
But it's so simple. Your GP, being the splendid forward thinking chap or chapess that he/she is, will grant you access to your GP records online by 2015. At the same time, the NHSCB will put the plans in place for system-wide EHRs also by 2015, but to be delivered some time before the end of this geological epoch.
That's if they don't get distracted by the flying pigs, naturally.
Transparancy, transparancy, transparancy...Phoenix 68 weeks ago
This all sounds good. But what is to be mandated? What's the definition of EHR being used here? This could range from me registering my health details on a central web site and getting health and care information through to a full blown Health and Social Care Record.
The former is achievable by 2015...the latter me thinks will take a little longer.
We need to understand wording and definitions here.
At last - A decision, maybe not perfect, but a clear directionehireader18to14to12 69 weeks ago
It is a shame this will not be offered to patient/service users from within the NHS but without a shadow of a doubt it will be to their benefit and for his reason I will be 'joining' in, hopefully working with the Information Centre for Health and Social Care (tbc - see below) and getting on with IT asap. (In the mean time I hope to be supported in finishing something off which I belive will also be of benefit to the patient/service user).
To all the developers out there please remeber:
1. The data originates from patient/service users - even if it is anonamized, treat it with respect and involve patient/service users/carers wherever possible
2. The quality of data is determined when it is captured ie. at source, don't mask poor data quality with software
3. Every patient/service user is unique and has both mental and physical health, many are also receiving social care - the IC will be the guardians of of all the relevant data
Good luck, particularly to all the SMEs out there :-)
How about a patient owned health record?jlscott 69 weeks ago
Maybe this has been muted before, but what about the patient owning their health record. It would be stored digitally, accessible online but independently of the GP, NHS Trust or other organisation. The patient would have the ability to view it at any time, submit amendments or corrections and grant and revoke access to whomever they wish.
re: 3 years away ... can we wait this long?mrtablet 68 weeks ago
Look on the bright side - at least so far it appears that this time they aren't giving 6 billion plus to management consultancies to fulfil political pseudo-populist, hubristic and business case free fantasies.
Management consultancies? I don't think so...nota bene 68 weeks ago
This really doesn't help.
At launch, NPfIT was awarded to BT, CSC, Fujitsu and Accenture - well, to the consortia they led anyway. Only one of these is a proper management consultancy; the others are systems integrators who may or may not have a consultancy arm. If you're going to take a broad swipe at a whole industry with your consultancyism (in the way I hope you would not do at people of a particular gender or race), at least get your terminology right please.
Secondly, the problem lay (and may yet lie) with both the purchaser and the provider; it is facile to blame only one of these, unless you genuinely believe that the purchaser knew exactly what they were doing but was let down by those dastardly systems integrators.
@simon1964mrtablet 68 weeks ago
> in my experience there are CSUs out there that have little or no knowledge of this area of health care and see at as just IT<
Count yourself lucky to have a CSU focused on IT!
Many CSU's attributes seem limited to great sales and marketing operations and smarter contract lawyers than the DoH.
Hmmmin arduis fidelis 68 weeks ago
Not giving it away yet!!!!!! Isn't there someone high in the NHS CB pecking order that has close ties with KPMG, and since CB is being mainly staffed by CfH personnel, that was their answer before so why would it be any different this time around!
"GPs should get on with it" but surely that depends on who is supporting and advising them, in my experience there are CSUs out there that have little or no knowledge of this area of health care and see at as just IT and not important to their jobs!!!! 2015!! I'm not holding my breath