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Digital Platform makes progress as first pilots go live to support two way flow of health and social care information

A next-generation digital platform which joins up health, care and community, is supporting the sharing of public sector data across Greater Manchester.

The Greater Manchester Digital Platform promises to use this shared data to digitally transform local services by allowing professionals to view and input into health and social care data, wherever they are.

John Llewellyn, Director of Digital, Northern Care Alliance, said:

“It’s a fantastic journey – here is Greater Manchester we have the right working partnership, a really agile approach, great methodology and exciting new technology. We’re pioneering ground-breaking technology as part of the national NHS LHCR (Local Health Care Record) Programme.

“And as well as launching the Summary Care Plans, the GM Digital Platform is supporting the Covid-19 response with instant situation reporting and piloting the integration of numerous digital systems for out of hospital care.”

Sean Fielding SQUARE (1)

Cllr Sean Fielding, GMCA Lead for Employment, Skills and Digital, said: “The Greater Manchester Digital Platform is a fantastic example of using digital tools to deliver benefits that help the city region’s people lead healthier, happier lives and I’m pleased to see progress being made in this space.

The platform has been developed to help everyone in Greater Manchester, making sure that professionals supporting our people have the right information, at the right time and in the right way. The platform will be integral in driving improvements for our citizens, whether this is in health, care or the wider public sector.

The platform has the capability to connect and harmonise multiple components and systems across health and care, as well as other voluntary public sector organisations. It will also support citizens to safely input into their health and records via Personal Held Records, for the first time. This will help them manage their own health and wellbeing in the future, through digital tools and apps. It will be the first of its kind in the UK.

Built in a managed multi-cloud environment, using resilient individual cloud environments for each part of the platform to store relevant data, information from each organisation will migrate safety across each cloud.

Unlike other shared record services, the GM Digital Platform includes a complex record locator service which can identify data at record speeds and means other UK organisations will be able to locate and use records from Greater Manchester, with the necessary permissions.

It will also include the most up-to-date cloud analytics and data science technology, so anonymous data can be used for research and planning of future services, both locally and nationally.

State of the art authentication, based on standardised job roles, will mean it can automatically pick up when a member of staff changes role, so information governance can be adhered to.

Built and tested in a specially created model environment, some of the components of the platform are already being used in Greater Manchester. The GM Digital Platform is currently hosting data from different sources to connect communities and support health and care professionals with the following initiatives,

In August the programme launches its Summary Care Plan for dementia and frailty in Tameside, followed by Salford and Trafford localities. Stockport will be the next to launch the Summary Care Plan.

The Summary Care Plan will, for the first time, give health and care professionals in primary, secondary and community care, the ability to read and write back into a shared care plan for people with dementia and frailty. This means professionals in health and social care can create, access and input into dementia and frailty care plans with live data at any time, wherever they are based. It can be accessed via their current systems.

For patients, their information will be kept up to date and accessible at their GP practice, in the community and also in hospital, as well as with out of hours providers. They will not have to repeat important information at the point of care. For professionals, this means they can update care plans and view the most recent information for each person they care for. In future, the care plan can also be accessed by other public sector organisations such as ambulance, police and prison services, with the necessary permissions.

Background information

This initiative is funded in partnership with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) and NHS England's Local Health and Care Record Exemplar (LHCRE) programme.

The programme is being delivered by Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, in partnership with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) and supported by the Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership (GMHSCP), Health Innovation Manchester and all health and social care providers in Greater Manchester.

The GM Digital Platform programme involves a number of leading technology suppliers. It has contracted 11 technology suppliers to work with the programme team so the programme is delivered within two years.