RCN welcomes plans for a ‘paperless’ NHS
Published: 16 January 2013
The Royal College of Nursing has welcomed Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s commitment to developing technology across health and social care systems in his plans for a “paperless NHS” in England.
But the RCN has warned that health care staff will need support and access to relevant technologies.
RCN Chief Executive & General Secretary Dr Peter Carter said that high quality patient care and nursing practice has always relied on the effective management of information.
“Nurses can use health information technology systems for effective communication, outcome monitoring and to further drive improvements in patient care. However, it is vital that there is support for organisations to put these measures in place. One of the key problems many nurse face is the burden of providing the same patient information in multiple formats for different audiences or purposes. Equally, there is a need to ensure nurses are provided with the technology.”
The RCN has warned that patients may be wary of breaches of patient confidentiality, so it is important that the proposed changes are introduced with care and caution.
The RCN is keen to work alongside the Government to ensure that the changes are successful.
Last year an RCN survey revealed that only just over a third of community nurses have access to a laptop and less than 60 percent have access to a mobile phone.