Health Informatics Professionalism and Improving Patient Care


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Di Millen
Head of Informatics Development
NHS Connecting for Health (England)

Published in: Health & Medicine
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  • Health Informatics Professionalism and Improving Patient Care

    1. 1. Health Informatics Professionalism and Improving Patient Care Di Millen Head of Informatics Development NHS Connecting for Health (England)
    2. 2. Why Invest in the Development of Health Informatics Specialists? <ul><li>Deliver high quality, flexible, modern health services, which are efficient, effective and safe. </li></ul>
    3. 3. What do want? <ul><li>Secure information and secure systems </li></ul><ul><li>Systems that support process improvements – for patients and clinicians </li></ul><ul><li>Systems that minimise risk - to prevent adverse incidents </li></ul><ul><li>Patients and clients to have access to and control over their information </li></ul>
    4. 4. So, where are we now?
    5. 7. From that, to this:
    6. 11. Information – at heart of most medical errors <ul><li>27% of medication errors caused by poor or unavailable information </li></ul><ul><li>1200 people die in England and Wales each year through medication errors </li></ul><ul><li>10% of all in patients experience an adverse event of which 46% preventable; 33% led to death or greater morbidity </li></ul><ul><li>Each adverse event leads to average 8.5 days in patient care </li></ul>
    7. 12. IT enabled change – the reality <ul><li>Choose and book – 23 steps in the manual pathway, reduced to 10 in on-line also less DNAs; quality of service etc </li></ul><ul><li>PACs – manual system 6 days turnaround and 13 steps in the process </li></ul><ul><li>digital </li></ul><ul><li>speedier diagnosis leads to speedier recovery </li></ul>
    8. 13. Good health informatics v bad health informatics? <ul><li>Informatics professionals need to be able to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Design and innovate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Translate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lead business change and service modernisation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Informatics professionals in health also need to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand health and care processes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand the culture and politics of health </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deliver safe and secure systems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be aware of ethical considerations </li></ul></ul>
    9. 14. Technical expertise is not enough <ul><li>We need excellent technicians but we also need specialists with equally excellent knowledge of care processes, able to communicate with clinical colleagues etc </li></ul><ul><li>We need flexible, well qualified professionals who can manage – people, resources, contracts; help to design hardware and software solutions; identity and realise the potential of IT information and IT enabled change …..not only to support current delivery mechanisms but also new approaches to remote diagnosis, monitoring and care – new focus on care in the home care in the community </li></ul>
    10. 15. So what do we need to do? <ul><li>Make health an attractive place to work </li></ul><ul><li>Build opportunities – career pathways, remuneration packages, opportunities for personal and professional development </li></ul><ul><li>Professionalise – registration/accreditation – individuals, teams and education and development opportunities </li></ul>
    11. 16. Issue 1 – lack of career pathways <ul><li>The challenge – developing career pathways across a complex, multi-disciplinary function </li></ul><ul><li>National activity – Apprenticeships, Foundation Degrees, working with further and higher education establishments to fill gaps </li></ul>
    12. 17. Issue 2 – pay and conditions of service <ul><li>The challenge – market forces, local strategies and local culture and a national pay system </li></ul><ul><li>National activity – national occupational standards; job profiles and recruitment premia; professionalism and status </li></ul>
    13. 18. Issue 3 – opportunities for personal and professional development <ul><li>The challenge – communicating information; quality assurance; value for money </li></ul><ul><li>National activity – information portal (“onestopshop”); guidance e.g. mentoring; Health Informatics Quality Scheme; CPD; Microsoft Academies; national leadership development scheme </li></ul>
    14. 19. Issue 4 – accreditation or registration? <ul><li>The challenge – accreditation or registration?; individuals and teams?; voluntary or statutory? engaging with employers </li></ul><ul><li>National activity – support for UKCHIP; national benchmarking and accreditation project; marketing and communications </li></ul>
    15. 20. Issue 5 – developing a sense of community <ul><li>The challenge – engagement; time; energy and return on investment </li></ul><ul><li>National activity – NHS Faculty of Health Informatics; national conferences; Health Informatics on-line Community; Accolades </li></ul>
    16. 21. Remaining Issues <ul><li>Who should own and champion a national strategy? </li></ul><ul><li>Variable levels of funding </li></ul><ul><li>Local approaches and policies </li></ul><ul><li>No routine workforce data collection </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of acknowledgement by mainstream human resource and workforce planning specialists </li></ul>
    17. 22. Other challenges <ul><li>Links with Higher Education </li></ul><ul><li>How far is informatics in health special? </li></ul><ul><li>Is health informatics too broad a church? </li></ul><ul><li>Measuring the benefits of investment </li></ul>
    18. 23. Conclusions <ul><li>Much of this is an act of faith but … </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Choose and Book can reduce DNAs with associated benefits </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PACs can speed up diagnosis, treatment and recovery </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>POE can speed up tests, results and therefore diagnosis, treatment etc </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nurses who are trained to ECDL level in computer usage can save 30 mins a day each day ….. </li></ul></ul>
    19. 24. Links <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>communities </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>