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More imagination needed in the health system says NHS England Director
Parts of the health service need to show more imagination when it comes to technology and improving care, Matthew Swindells, NHS England’s National Director for Commissioning Operations and Information, has told delegates at the Health and Care Innovation Expo 2016.
In his keynote speech at the Manchester event, Mr Swindells said: “There is a huge challenge out there. We are evolving new models of care, we are trying to create more freedom but to people who say we need to send more guidance, I say ‘you need to show more imagination and we need to solve these problems locally within the context of the extremely hard exam question that the Secretary of State has set us’.”
In a wide ranging speech, Mr Swindells also emphasised the need to engage carers in the health and care process, give patients more control of their medical records and the importance of reaching the target audience behind new technologies, not just the ‘iWatch generation counting their steps every day.’
“At the heart of our strategy will be ‘how do we empower people, patients and carers thought the use of technology?'” Mr Swindells said.
He also reassured trusts that are not currently in the exemplar vanguards that they can still count on support.
“My message to them is that they are still part of our efforts to transform technology across the country and that there are going to be other ways for them to access money, development and clear guidance because I’m not looking to have any child left behind here, we need to move everybody forwards.
“In some ways we need to avoid obsessing about the acute sector and start obsessing about the community and mental health services. Almost every STP strategy, at its core, is about an enhancement of out of hospital care and it would be a mistake to think you solve out of hospital care by focussing on hospitals. We need to focus on systems such as care management, home nursing, community hospitals, primary care hubs and out-of-hours services which all need investment and moving forward quickly if STPs are to be successful.”
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