Weeknote: 23 to 27 August 2021

Bike leaning on fence by side of road with fields and hills in the distance
Making the most of the summer by getting out for a bike ride before work every morning

What inspired me this week?

Colleagues from NHS England, NHSX, and NHS Digital all together in one remote meeting, reflecting on the emerging plan for urgent and emergency care (UEC) recovery, and the different ways that digital can help.

The UEC products show and tell from NHS Digital teams, covering everything from essential security upgrades made by suppliers to some forthcoming experimentation with travel times alongside of “as the crow flies” distances as a sorting criteria in recommending services. There were also some early discovery findings from the team investigating user needs for a patient encounter history. I’m looking forward to hearing more stakeholders’ responses to that and seeing the discovery report widely shared.

How did I uphold the NHS Constitution?

The NHS is committed to providing best value for taxpayers’ money

NHS Constitution for England

I’m asking for a “gateway review” of our transformation programme for digital in urgent and emergency care. Preparing for this will mean some additional work for the team, but it’s right that we make sure at an early stage that we’re set up for success.

The NHS pledges to provide a positive working environment for staff and to promote supportive, open cultures that help staff do their job to the best of their ability

NHS Constitution for England

I asked a colleague to think about how we make a recruitment process more inclusive. They took it on board and came up with a good solution.

What connections did I make?

I had an introductory call with a digital leader from the ambulance sector. We talked about digital maturity, the difference between digitisation and transformation, and the unintended consequences of some of the ways that national funding can flow to providers. Lots of food for thought for me to share with my colleagues in the national organisations.

What do I need to take care of?

In the last few months, we’ve gained a new Secretary of State, a new NHS Chief Executive, and a new Transformation Director. With some other people moves coming up, there is more change on the horizon. I know change can be unsettling, but I am reassured that the work our teams do is central to the future of the NHS, whatever the organisational structures. Times of change also open up a window of opportunity to get things on the agenda that we may have wanted for some time, but not yet been able to achieve. I hope colleagues will look after each other, while also looking out for those opportunities.

How many days did I get some exercise?

5 out of 5, hoping to make this a habit.

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