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03.09.15

Local digital roadmaps to form part of CCG assurance framework

By the end of October CCGs will need to complete and return a footprint and governance template for their local digital roadmaps, according to Tim Kelsey, NHS England’s national director for patients and information. 

Speaking today at NHS Expo in Manchester, he confirmed the announcement made earlier this week that every local health and care area is required to submit a delivery plan by April 2016 describing how they will become paper-free at the point of care by 2020

He added that the National Information Board, which he chairs, has published detailed guidance to support CCGs with the development of their roadmaps. 

Kelsey said: “This is not one of those random technology initiatives – this is going to be a fundamental part of the commissioning and regulatory infrastructure and will be a core part of CCG assurance and a core part of CQC inspections going forward.” 

Within the guidance it was noted that local digital roadmaps will be considered as part of the CCG assurance framework from 2016-17 onwards, and CCGs “should expect to be held to account for meeting the milestones in their roadmap”. 

Each and every CCG is also required to complete and return a footprint and governance template by 30 October 2015. 

From November, all CCGs and providers will complete a self-assessment to benchmark their use of digital technology and paper-free records. The results will form a ‘digital maturity index’, giving a picture of how far the NHS has come on its mission to make effective and meaningful use of technology and highlighting areas for improvement. Going forward, the ‘digital maturity index’ will become part of the CQC inspection regime. 

Kelsey also confirmed that NHS England will be launching an NHS endorsement programme. “This will allow apps developers to get the NHS kite mark for services that we think are safe and are a value to our patients,” he said.

“Around the world there are approximately 97,000 health apps. Who knows how many of those are safe or not? The NHS now needs to encourage people to use digital services and that is why we are launching the endorsement programme.”

Full coverage of NHS Expo will be in the September/October edition of NHE. 

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