DIGITAL ROADMAP IMPROVEMENT PROGRAMME
Throughout 2022 and into 2023, Midlands NHS Community Mental Health (MCMH) partnered with Practicus to deliver a robust roadmap and business case to achieve its goal of Minimum Digital Foundations by 2025.
As part of the NHS’s 5-year Digital Transformation Plan, MCMH’s digital readiness had to be levelled up to Minimum Digital Foundations. With minimal staff confidence in the effectiveness of its current systems, it’s Electronic Patient Record systems (EPRs) needed greater digital maturity as mandated by NHSE, with the necessary funding from NHSE to be secured. In the face of stiff competition for funding, minimal internal funding, limited internal expertise, a tight 2 year deadline to achieve compliance and the potential risk to patient safety and the Trust’s Provider License, MCMH required ongoing support and leadership to achieve it’s goals.
Through an experienced team that had unique insight into the operational nuances of the department, they have created:
- A detailed work plan for the targeted workstreams including a flexible plan modelled for service demand and capacity based upon actual demand levels
- Engagement practices that increase engagement of clinicians and staff to overcome internal workforce barriers and provide a more cohesive and flexible service of care for patients
- A new Target Operating Model that addresses the CQC and external reviewers’ concerns, establish an environment for the return of trainees, is aligned to service demand, enables safe General Surgery, and is affordable
- A new Learning Agreement recommendation to formalize the process of goal setting and review meetings, underpinning training for Junior Doctors
As a result, the Trust’s digital profile was raised with NHSE who found their digital maturity progress ahead of nationally benchmarked expectations. The creation of the roadmap and business case achieved:
- Early release of funding from NHSE
- Agreement by the Trust to find match funding whilst managing pressurised budgets
- Frontline EPR functionality improvements and reduced clinical risk
- Upgraded connectivity, digital infrastructure and devices for staff
- A higher profile for digital literacy, system training and digital adoption
- A clear roadmap and ownership of milestone achievements to be shared by the services and the IM&T function
- Raising of digital maturity and governance as a recurrent board-level conversation, including its regular appearance on the Trust risk register
Under the tight timeframe, our team:
- Established a template approach enabling deployment across care groups
- Engaged Trust staff assessing their digital challenges, their future digital requirements and any barriers to adoption of a ‘new digital’ landscape
- Held stakeholder workshops agreeing care groups’ shared needs, ‘smart’ spending objectives and critical success factors, short-listed way-forward options and secured SRO and ICB backing for the recommended option
- Managed a technical consultancy team assessing EPR maturity and ascertained the gaps and the cost to close them
- Created a ‘Green Book’ business case signed off by senior stakeholders and presented to NHSE for funding application
- Implement the template across all care groups to produce an agreed Trust-wide set of digital needs, priorities, timelines and costs.