Nottingham and Nottinghamshire ICS’s insight report highlights digital in delivery access and data in promoting capacity

Nottingham and Nottinghamshire integrated care system has published its insight report with the aim of providing the integrated care partnership with a summary of activities and findings from work across the ICS, with key findings highlighting the role of digital in delivering access, data in promoting capacity planning, and new technology in improving prevention, support, and data sharing for staff.

Through the report, the ICS draws attention to the importance of improving digital literacy across various patient and citizen cohorts. One example raised is dementia care, with the ICS noting that to address challenges faced by older individuals, they must ensure a “comprehensive, multi-agency approach with a strong focus on the VCSE sector” which should include support with digital solutions. Support with digital literacy is also encouraged for the wider community following open conversations to gather perspectives and opinions, and a recommendation made by the report is the creation of digital literacy programmes to assist in this area.

Looking to provision of personalised care, the report shares an aspiration for the ICS to develop an ‘About Me’ resource which health and social care staff along with patients can access and discuss. The report states that challenges have been faced including confusion around duplication through different services, organisations and departments creating similar documents. The ICS is working locally to overcome these challenges by creating a digital solution, in order to support people to complete an ‘About Me’ themselves and make it easier to share with health and care professionals. A digitalisation project is currently underway, with a working group formed and “working towards phase one, a text version via a patient facing system within the NHS App”. The working group has aspirations to develop this work further to meet wider needs, including embedding multimedia options and different language options.

On effective communication and information exchange, the report emphasis the importance of “using multiple platforms to ensure accessibility and awareness of healthcare services”, along with the need for strong communication between organisations. At the ICS Partners Assembly, which brought together 113 system stakeholders, carers, service users, patients and citizens, the challenge of digital exclusion was raised, with attendees urging more consideration of “diverse technological needs and preferences of different population groups”.

The assembly also discussed integration and collaboration, with the report noting that a topic of conversation was current IT systems and the barriers they represent. Feedback revolved around use of different IT systems in organisations “hindering integration, with examples of varying levels of technology, lack of system compatibility and data sharing challenge across organisations”. With the need for reliable IT infrastructure also raised in discussions around resource allocation and funding coordination, feedback from the assembly encouraged investment in technology “to enhance healthcare delivery, improve patient outcomes, and optimise resource utilisation”.

Regarding data, the report acknowledges that data from across the system will inform future considerations of how services will meet capacity and demand in the future. Current data highlights areas in which resources will need to be deployed, including challenges with weight and long-term health conditions in people of working age. In challenges around data, the report notes issues with representativeness with limited data on BAME communities, and adds that “if data is based on people who are using services, it won’t help us understand those not accessing services”.

On the future of data across Nottingham and Nottinghamshire, the report emphasises utilising existing data and evidence to “fill knowledge gaps, inform decision-making, and identify areas for improvement”. This includes using NHS and Joint Strategic Needs Assessment data to “identify trends and plan interventions”.

The insights gathered through the report will be used as the ICP works on refreshing its strategy. “They serve as an important resource that will guide us in making informed decisions to ensure the continued effectiveness and responsiveness of our ICS,” the document states. “We are committed to using this information to refine our approach and ensure that our healthcare services remain adaptable and inclusive, ultimately benefiting our community.”

To read the report in full, please click here.

In other news on digital and tech in the Nottingham and Nottinghamshire region, Nervecentre’s electronic prescribing and medicines administration solution has recently gone live across Nottingham University Hospitals.

Last month, we spoke to four representatives from integrated care systems about their thoughts on the digital priorities in their region, including Andrew Fearn, chief digital officer for Nottingham and Nottinghamshire ICB