digital health, interoperability
“That’s why the HSCIC is pushing the integration agenda – as well as why we all need to work to create better systems”

HSCIC leader reminds audience of practitioners about why the NHS is pushing so hard on data integration

[Manchester, UK] The human side of why we want to better ‘join up’ health and social care information is too often forgotten.

But that human factor is not something Tom Denwood, Director of National Provider Support at the HSCIC (The Health and Social Care Information Centre), ever loses sight of for long.

That’s because he keeps coming back to the poor experiences his own aged relatives have endured in the care system, he told an audience of health IT leaders in Manchester this week.

Such problems included data getting lost, poor handover between the agencies looking after his loved ones, and how responsibility for data ownership ultimately had to be shouldered by the family itself.

"That’s really why we need interoperability and Integration,” he said.

“Real-time data transfer and central, safe holding of patient information would really have helped.

“And that’s why the HSCIC is pushing the integration agenda – as well as why we all need to work to create better systems.

"Such systems need to be a blend of local initiative buttressed by central standards, with an emphasis on practical solutions," Denwood added.

Discussion around interoperability and integration

Denwood was speaking at one of the latest of a special series of one-day regional conferences organised by NHS England and HIMSS UK.

The programme – Health Insights – is bringing together NHS health IT experts and frontline practitioners in a bid to share best practice around key issues such as interoperability and integration.

The events qualify as Continuous Professional Development (CPD) and are completely free to attend for qualified health professionals, with the next and final event in the series scheduled for Leeds next week (8 December).

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