NHSX funding guidance – “A step in the right direction”
“The opportunity to continue the digital transformation of health and care is one that cannot be stalled. For the NHS, in the context of the work of integrated care systems, sufficient funding for digital and new technology should be seen as an imperative." Greg Allen, FCC’s CEO
NHS Providers* have broadly welcomed proposals in the Who Pays for What (WPFW) guidance from NHSX which accompanied their What Good Looks Like (WGLL) framework for digital health services published earlier this week.
But they warned its success, and the ability of trusts to progress on the digital agenda, will ultimately depend on the comprehensive spending review settlement this autumn.
Saffron Cordery, Deputy Chief Executive, NHS Providers, commented: “It’s a step in the right direction.”
But she said they needed to be “mindful of the amount of funding available for digital innovations” and where it fitted in a growing list of priorities for health spending.
She added: “After such huge progress made over the last year, trust leaders do not want digital delivery to stall.
“From board level to the frontline, there is an ambition across the sector to accelerate digital ways of working like never before.
“While the WGLL framework articulates the vision for the NHS’ digital agenda and WPFW guidance has set the groundwork for a funding framework, we need the investment to make this a reality for patients, service users and staff.”
The WPFW guidance describes the barriers to investment in digital technology and how NHSX proposes to start to fix them in 2021/22 and beyond.
During 2021 to 2022 they will consolidate national funding for transformational tech projects into a single fund and take steps to support ICSs to make better investments.
From 2022 to 2023 they propose to start moving away from central funding of frontline tech, and ICSs will increasingly be given control over the resources with which to deliver their tech plans.
NHSC say they’ve listened to people about the main barriers to investment in digital technology which include:
They say work is needed in all three areas to assess:
And they are appealing for feedback on the proposals at: [email protected].
Greg Allen, FCC’s CEO said: “The opportunity to continue the digital transformation of health and care is one that cannot be stalled. For the NHS, in the context of the work of integrated care systems, sufficient funding for digital and new technology should be seen as an imperative.
“Ultimately, if patient unmet needs are to be met, service provision must be complemented by rapid adoption of digital solutions from an innovative marketplace that is eager to assist.”
*In a new report, NHS Providers and the NHS Confederation have said an extra £10bn will be needed to cover pandemic-related costs and reduce the backlog in operations and treatments.