Sunday, November 12, 2006

NHS staff in London lack confidence in the new IT system

according to an article on the Amicus Union web-site.

"According to an independent survey commissioned by Amicus union , NHS staff in London lack confidence in the implementation of the NHS' controversial new IT system to link GP surgeries to hospitals. Only nine per cent of respondents believed that their views had been taken into account and only eight per cent believed the new system will represent value for money. Eighteen per cent disagreed with the statement 'the new IT system will help them do their jobs better' and 49 per cent did not know. The respondents were asked a number of questions on their attitudes towards the implementation and eventual outcome of the IT new system. A surprising number of respondents were unable to answer many of the questions, choosing the "don't know" option. 42% of the respondents did not know whether the new IT system for transferring patients records between GP surgeries and hospitals would be quicker and more efficient. 48% did not know whether the new IT system would decrease bureaucracy. The survey was conducted to gauge the level of consultation over the introduction of new IT systems in the NHS. NHS Connecting for Health is delivering the National Programme for IT to bring modern computer systems into the NHS aimed at improving patient care and services. The NHS over the next ten years intends to connect over 30,000 GPs in England to almost 300 hospitals and give patients access to their personal health and care information. BT, is responsible for deploying NPfIT (National Programme for IT) software in London. Whilst the union acknowledges the importance of the new IT system for improving patient care, the lack of staff involvement is symptomatic of the NHS' and its providers failure to listen to its staff who are responsible for delivering patient care. Amicus is calling on the NHS and its providers to give end users a greater say and more information on the delivery of the new IT system. Whilst the NHS has undoubtedly got better, morale amongst health service employees is at rock bottom, made worse by a series of rapidly introduced changes without the involvement of staff. . ."