News, Secondary Care

Surrey and Borders Partnership publishes new digital strategy

Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust recently published its new digital strategy, entitled ‘Our Digital Journey. Every Person, Every Story’.

The ‘digital journey’ focuses on putting patients at the heart of tech services and solutions, highlighting the need to ‘enable and empower’ members of the public to make informed choices and decisions about their own care.

In addition, the Trust has put more online booking services and digital access for patients to view their own personal care records, front and centre of its new plans.

In a statement on its website, the Trust said its new vision ‘puts people before technology’ and ‘develops the best personalised experience’. And this ethos is underlined in the strategy by a set of nine ‘People Before Technology’ principles that span a range of goals surrounding accessibility and inclusivity, innovation, working in partnership with patients and using data to inform decisions.

As well as laying out plans and aims for the next few years, the document acknowledges the changes surrounding healthcare and the ‘digital revolution’ taking place within the NHS.

The four core aims laid out in the literature are:

  • For patients to feel empowered and better informed
  • A greater choice in receiving care
  • Information available for patients moving between services
  • Data available as and when it is needed.

As for what this means for patients, and the real-world benefits, it’s expected that the initiatives will lead to ‘information being collected once and used many times’, as well as improved and modernised digital customer services, improved accessibility and enhanced privacy.

The aim is to empower patients to access and update their own record through the NHS App and the Trust will introduce of a Personal Health Record containing a care plan and information added by individuals.

This is complemented by a real-world goal, to provide a set of tangible results in the next five years, such as:

  • The capacity for people to choose digital options for services first, e.g. virtual appointments
  • Modernised community and mental health services
  • The ability for patients to choose, where appropriate, how they receive care.

To aid with digital inclusivity, which the Trust hopes will become ‘the new normal’, there’s also a fresh focus on improving digital literacy and changing mindsets, as well as a promise to ‘collaborate at every step’.

For more detail, view the Surrey and Borders Partnership digital journey in full.