Digital inclusion programme launched in Rotherham

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council has announced the launch of a new programme of digital support, which will help to promote digital inclusion for residents across the borough.

The project – a collaboration between the council, NHS, RotherFed, Voluntary Action Rotherham, RNN Colleges, Age UK Rotherham and Barnardo’s – has seen people in Rotherham asked about their views and experiences of using technology. The feedback was then used to create a digital inclusion strategy, which includes priorities such as supporting residents in getting online, helping residents use the internet and devices, and providing support so that residents feel safe online.

The programme includes a new website offering support and guidance, as well as a Rotherham Digital team, who will be providing digital support in the community.

Councillor Saghir Alam, cabinet member for corporate services, community safety and finance, comments: “Rotherham has launched its first ever Digital Inclusion Strategy. Through consultation with residents, we developed a number of priorities based on what you have told us. The Council and partners are working together to deliver a programme of digital support. This includes help to access the internet, as well as support to improve people’s digital skills and confidence. I would like to encourage residents to find out more by visiting the Rotherham Digital website, or by speaking to the team.”

NHS England recently published guidance on supporting digital inclusion in general practice, designed for healthcare staff and “anyone else who is seeking to reduce digital exclusion in general practice”.

Last month, NHS England also published its ‘Inclusive digital healthcare: a framework for NHS action on digital inclusion’, designed to help services in designing and implementing inclusive digital approaches and technologies which align appropriately with non-digital services and support.

In other news from the region, we recently covered how the University of Sheffield, in partnership with Sheffield Hallam University, has launched a new digital healthcare hub in South Yorkshire with aims to create and develop innovative health technologies and digital health tools, which “fuse data from daily life activities with NHS data”.