Improving patient outcomes through digital innovation

Dr Harpreet Sood urges health professionals to increase technology uptake

A leading UK clinician is calling for increased adoption of digital and technological solutions to bring about change and improve health and care services for patients.

Dr Harpreet Sood, a senior fellow to the chairman and chief executive’s office at NHS England, will speak about the importance of health technology and innovation in the ehi LIVE keynotes conference.

Improving patient outcomes is at the heart of the 10 free-to-attend conferences, which run alongside the exhibition at the UK’s-largest digital health event, taking place at NEC Birmingham from 1-2 November.

It is important to say for innovators and SMEs that we are at a time where resources are challenging and we are going through a period of transformation and innovation

ehi LIVE is working with NHS England and NHS Digital to host the conferences over the two days.

With the theme ‘From implementation to patient outcomes’, the event aligns well with the NHS digital technology priorities: promoting better communication of patient care needs; helping health tech to develop sustainably; and ensuring consistency and reducing variability across the NHS.

Dr Sood’s work focuses on two main aspects at NHS England. One priority is prevention, for example, looking at how digitisation can be used in the fight to prevent diabetes.

The other is around digitising secondary care as part of the wider transformation agenda in local geographies and getting all levels of the workforce enthused and engaged about it.

“That is why, from the centre, we are continuously highlighting why change is important,” he said.

He added: “It is important to say for innovators and SMEs that we are at a time where resources are challenging and we are going through a period of transformation and innovation.

We need to see some quick wins, but we also need to get leadership across the system about why the investment in innovation and its uptake is important

“We need to see some quick wins, but we also need to get leadership across the system about why the investment in innovation and its uptake is important.”

Visitors to the show will hear the latest about the NHS financial incentives for innovators and SMEs, intended to boost health tech uptake more widely across NHS service providers.

The event will also be a forum to discuss the NHS Five Year Forward View commitment to scaling up digital health technology.

Visitors will find out more about the opportunities presented by NHS England setting up centres of global digital excellence with a £100m-plus funding pot.

Dr Sood said: “The NHS Innovation and Technology Tariff will allow those organisations that are ready to secure services across the system to tap into this tariff and apply for it.

“If we can identify a whole host of applications that are ready to scale up, the next question is how do we help them from a financial reimbursement perspective.”

ehi LIVE will also address NHS structural complexities which make it a bigger task for outside organisations to work with the NHS.

Dr Sood said: “From an SME perspective, we see the challenges and how they end up having to sell to multiple providers and organisations.

“A lot of them do not have huge sales forces, so it is important for us to think about creating an ecosystem that works for all.

Dr Harpreet Sood

“An event such as ehi LIVE brings together such a wide cross section of commissioners, users and developers and it provides a great opportunity to discuss these issues and share ideas, which will go on to make a real difference in patients’ lives.”

Dr Sood joins a number of speakers from NHS Digital, NHS England, the Royal College of Physicians, NHS trusts, GP practices, and industry.

The programme includes more real-life case studies of patient-centred programmes across the sessions, as well as a new clinical track, which will focus on mental health.

Other new features for the 2016 show, include:

  • The Knowledge Hub featuring leading experts imparting their insight on the latest technologies that are changing the industry
  • TechUK START UP to present the newest innovative and disruptive technologies in digital health being developed specifically by start-up technology companies
  • The two-day Developer Challenge, tasking developers with creating industry-changing solutions live on site to help better NHS processes, in partnership with NHS Digital
  • A cyber security zone on the show floor to showcase the latest technology in protecting the NHS from cybercrimes with real industry case studies

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