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NHSX reveals plan for NHS Account for digital services

08/06/21

Mark Say Managing Editor

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NHSX has revealed plans for the development of an NHS Account to simplify patient access to digital services.

Health icons around tablet computer

It has published details of the programme for potential suppliers, saying the account will link with services and data stores for new functions – citing the example of being able to nominate proxies to help with healthcare.

It will also link to a programme to develop a service for working with patients to improve their health based on information they choose to share.

“We aim to develop an architecture to provide an account infrastructure for the NHS that would give patients a unified experience across our digital service – giving users continuity, so that they don’t need to start from scratch each time they need to do something with the NHS,” the document says.

“We want to design an architecture which lets users stay signed in across multiple services so that users can experience a more personalised and joined up journey. We want to develop the account features iteratively so that we can learn what works well and understand our user needs.

Search for support

NHSX has also published a market notice for support in an initial phase of discovery work and developing a “patient facing account wrapper and associated proxy service”.

This would provide a store of key information for individual patients, including demographics, communication contact preferences and long term conditions that they could access and manage themselves.

“Currently, services are not connected and each time a user accesses a service they have to repeat their story, nothing is captured centrally and often they are referred to different areas,” the notice says. “We would like to make it easier for people to transact with the NHS and also to reduce this diversity, which leads to errors in the data held for individuals.”

It adds that, while there is a manual process nominate proxies through GPs, it is confined to their records and is not offered by all practices. Also, there is no nationwide platform to support proactive messaging and the management of wellness and prevention services.

The programme will also involve integrating the account with the nhs.uk website, NHS Login and NHS App developed by NHS Digital.

Image from iStock, ipopba

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