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Future of Healthcare Q1 2023

Perpetual crisis in the NHS: how the industry can help

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Julian David

CEO, techUK

The benefits of digital tech solutions during Covid-19 were widely acknowledged and implemented.


As the country has begun to move on from the initial impact of the pandemic, techUK recently surveyed its health and social care members to reflect upon the steps taken by the Government in 2022 and identify the upcoming challenges in 2023 in ensuring digital technology improves outcomes and drives efficiencies. 

Maintaining health momentum

There is a pressing need to ensure that digital technology is utilised to lessen some of the pressures on the health and social care sector.

techUK’s survey asked participants to reflect upon the steps taken by the Government in 2022 to continue the healthcare sector’s digital transformation journey.

Our members, comprising digital businesses in the UK, identified the intention to join up health and care, including commitments made on shared care records for all citizens by 2024 (27%) and the placing of ICSs on statutory footing (24%) as the two actions that would have the most positive impact on digital transformation in health and social care.

Members also recognised the positive impact of the increase of the NHS budget to £3.3 billion and the extra funding of £1 billion to Adult Social Care.

Members have recognised persistent ‘crisis management’ as the greatest challenge facing the sector in 2023.

Progress in health and social care

The survey also asked members how much progress they thought had been made in the health and social care system’s digital transformation journey in 2022.

This issue divided members: 50% thought a fair amount of progress had been made, while 37% thought there had only been minimal progress.

This means the findings of the Health and Social Care Select Committee’s enquiry into the progress of NHS England’s digital transformation journey are of even greater importance.

Challenges in 2023

Respondents were asked to identify the greatest challenges to digital health tech in 2023.

The well-documented issues concerning the elective care backlog, retention and recruitment of staff, the demanding economic outlook and the demands of an ageing population have combined to make the perfect storm of difficulties facing the NHS.

Therefore, members have recognised persistent ‘crisis management’ as the greatest challenge facing the sector in 2023.

Industry went on to pinpoint insufficient funding for digital transformation, resistance to digital transformation and a lack of awareness regarding the potential benefits of technologies as three further areas of concern. 

As the sector continues to face these challenges, the Government and industry must work together to find viable solutions to improve the way the sector operates.

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