What changes can we expect to see to NHS England’s digital services?
NHS England is in the process of commissioning new digital services on behalf of the Informatics Services Commissioning Group (ISCG). It is expanding upon the existing NHS Choices (www.nhs.uk) which is a huge and complex site containing more than 80,000 pages and receiving more than one million vists per day. NHS Choices has evolved organically over the past few years and a new approach is needed to offer a more consistent experience across health and social care, as well as to meet user expectations for online transactions. Also, our analytics show us that more than half of visitors to NHS Choices are using mobile and tablet devices, so the future products are being developed with responsive design to ensure an equally great user experience on smaller screens.
How will an improved information service affect the patient/practitioner relationship?
Patients who are better informed about their health and care, from using services like NHS Choices, tend to be more confident in managing their conditions and more involved in making decisions that affect them. The benefits to patients are significant and include better management of long-term conditions, better medication management and greater adherance to treatment plans. These all result in fewer GP or hospital visits.
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