NHS Digital has awarded £784,000 to the members of the Care Provider Alliance to deliver a new sector-led service which will offer digital support for social care providers.
From now until March 2021, the members of the Care Provider Alliance will work to understand current levels of digital maturity, while helping the care provider sector to embrace the digital agenda.
They will also encourage uptake of existing digital resources that care providers can use to support integrated care.
The service will engage directly with providers to develop national guidance on a range of issues, which will set the foundations for open digital standards within the social care sector.
This will include the development of a core set of requirements for care providers to use when procuring new IT systems, as well as best practice for managing IT suppliers.
NHS Digital’s Director of Primary Care & Social Care Nic Fox said: “Enabling information to be shared safely and securely between the NHS, local government and social care providers has the potential to really improve standards of care and the way that care is delivered.
“It’s really important to stress that the work being done here is by the sector, for the sector, which will help to move the digital standards conversation forward within the care provider community.”
The Care Provider Alliance is made up of the ten main national associations which represent independent and voluntary adult social care providers in England. They work to represent the sector and ensure a coordinated response to the major issues that affect it.
Ian Turner, Chairman of the Registered Nursing Home Association, representing the Care Provider Alliance said: “We are really excited to be working with NHS Digital on this project. Safe and efficient information sharing has the potential to really transform the way care is delivered in the social care sector.
“What’s also really positive is the fact that all of the work will be done in collaboration with the social care sector, enabling the sector to drive the agenda.”