Unveiling the £14.3m digital transformation programme

Unveiling the £14.3m digital transformation programme
© iStock/marcoscisetti

Greater Manchester has unveiled plans for a £14.3m (~€15.8m) digital transformation programme designed to develop advanced technologies across its public services.

The Greater Manchester Combined Authority is contributing up to £6.8m as part of the digital transformation programme, with a further £7.5m coming from the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, under NHS England’s national Local Health and Care Record transformation programme.

Focusing on joining-up vital information and removing the current barriers of its services, the programme plans on using a variety of different technical systems. Under the plans, a suite of new technologies will be created to allow the safe and secure sharing of information between professionals, improve the accuracy of data and provide people with insights to take charge of their own health and wellbeing.

“We now need to move beyond the basic ability”

Jon Rouse, Chief Officer of the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership said: “Despite the digital revolution, public services have been left behind.

“All too often important information is held on hundreds of different systems which cannot be accessed from one place, so people end up having to repeat their story, care is not joined up, important information is missed and problems are not identified early, which in extreme cases could lead to harm.

“Each locality has already made good progress on sharing information locally, but we now need to move beyond the basic ability to share information to maximising the opportunities brought by devolution and take a GM-wide approach to digitally transforming our public services.”

“This will allow us to provide more personalised, integrated care and treatment, supported by rich data and next generation technology. It will ensure we continue to be at the leading edge of health innovation, supporting a continued increase in jobs, growth and prosperity for all.”

What will the tech be used for?

The technology will first be tested to improve care for people living dementia or who are frail by enabling critical information to be shared between patients, carers and professionals. Around 30,000 people are estimated to live with dementia in Greater Manchester, with around £270m spent on care and treatment each year.

The new technology will support more robust integrated care planning, assisting individuals maintain their independence and detect changes in their condition to avoid hospital admission.

The programme will also be used to digitise the paper-based assessments used to review a child’s development up to the age of five. Parents and guardians will be able to complete and review the tests online, which will directly feed into the child’s health record and help identify children who need additional support.

Investment is fundamental

Cllr Elise Wilson, Portfolio Lead for Digital City Region, said: “Investing in and upgrading digital technology is fundamental to transforming our public services, so that we can provide better care and support to local people now and into the future.”

“For instance, when we look at our top priorities, like ensuring children are ready for school, we find that parents and guardians don’t have sufficient access to information about their child’s development and professionals struggle with how fragmented the information is.

“This new digital transformation programme is key to unlocking this and helping our families to realise their full potential.”

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