Embracing technology to prepare for the future – all part of the NHS Long Term Plan.
Care for people with diabetes could be set to be transformed over the next decade – thanks to recommendations included in the NHS Long Term Plan.
With ever-evolving technological advances in the treatment of the condition, it is expected that more improvements over the next 10 years will mean doctors have more time to spend to with people with diabetes, in addition to being able to offer tailored care to suit patient’s needs.
A statement from the NHS about the Long Term Plan, said: “As medicine advances, health needs change and society develops, the NHS has to continually move forward so that in 10 years’ time we have a service fit for the future. The NHS Long Term Plan is drawn up by frontline staff, patient’s groups, and national experts to be ambitious but realistic.
“We must keep all that’s good about our health service and its place in our national life. But we must tackle head-on the pressures our staff face, while making our extra funding go as far as possible. And as we do so, we must accelerate the redesign of patient care to future-proof the NHS for the decade ahead.”
Hicom, producers of specialist diabetes patient data devices Diamond and Twinkle, is working with other IT patient systems providers to achieve the NHS long-term goal of becoming paperless, and how this is improving patient care and allowing clinicians more time with patients.
Jon Elburn, Product Manager at Hicom, said: “Two key aspects of the Long Term Plan are integration and culture.
“When it comes to integration, trusts are getting IT systems talking to each other by working with a number of specialist systems that can easily interface with a hospital’s existing Patient Administration System (PAS) and pathology systems. As a result, data from multiple sources is being consolidated and a single view of a patient’s record created. This is enabling multi-disciplinary clinical teams to access information whenever there is patient interaction. It’s no longer about the NHS having one big system, it’s about there being one source of information that can be shared on a departmental, trust, regional and national level.
“Culturally, staff are seeing the impact different technology is having on transforming day-to-day practices. Acceptance of the need to digitalise and the adoption of technology continues to increase, which is creating a virtuous circle. Time is being saved by removing the need to manually enter data into systems from paper-based records.
“The better allocation and management of resources is leading to more meaningful time being spent with patients and is allowing for the delivery of improved patient care. Never more so than within diabetes care, with patients often interacting with different clinical teams for different treatments, including their GP, inpatient specialist nurses, dietitians as well as eye and foot specialists. The importance of such collaboration will continue to grow with the rising number of diabetes patients in the UK.
“Whilst it may seem that there is a lot still to do in order to reach the goals laid out in the Long Term Plan, there is much progress being made and this needs to continue and expand. Trusts should ensure they share their successes, learn from each other, and work closely with trusted partners to join up IT systems.”