Digital technology has long been understood as an enabler in streamlining processes. This has been well-documented since the start of the pandemic; true depth and power of digital technology has been fully embraced.
Digital solutions and technology have been critical for healthcare services, teams and providers. Through technology adoption, clinical teams have been able to continue to provide critical patient consultations using remote solutions, proving essential in minimising the spread of the virus.
The global pandemic has rapidly accelerated how technology is being used by healthcare professionals, in both clinical but also non-patient facing roles. Not only has technology enabled healthcare professionals to deliver a range of clinical services digitally, it has allowed administration teams to work remotely, reducing the risk of infection transmission in hospital settings. The rapid wave of digital adoption became apparent within weeks of the first lockdown, as this article from April last year makes clear “The impact of COVID-19 on health tech adoption in the UK”.
The adoption of digitised solutions has not only been harnessed but fast tracked by healthcare professionals, allowing them to provide the same level of care as they would in a face-to-face clinical situation.
NHS Trusts can fully capitalise by digitising care pathways for elective surgical procedures to collect patient reported outcome measures (PROMS). By digitalising these processes, NHS trusts and healthcare professionals can:
Improve governance and reduce the risk of potential litigation through digital consent;
Avoid losing or misplacing important operating notes;
Increase accessibility of patient information digitally across departments and clinical specialties.
Most importantly a digital solution allows clinical and administration teams to work in a fully collaborative manner, minimising manual searching for paper based notes on specific procedures. Furthermore it will generate significant cost savings to NHS Trusts through the reduction in paper, ink consumption and storage.
Interoperability is a key consideration when adopting a digitised service or solution. An interoperable platform provides a seamless integration between ‘legacy’ platforms, allowing a unified communication model across multi-disciplinary speciality teams both clinical and administrative.