NHS Digital merged into NHS England
From 1st February 2023, NHS Digital teams and responsibilities have been absorbed into NHS England.
This change follows a review which looked into how digital transformation could occur across the NHS in line with the objectives of the NHS Long Term Plan and a subsequent decision that NHS Digital would be merged into NHS England.
NHS England’s new digital teams will continue the work running the national IT systems which support NHS IT in the community pharmacy sector and more widely within health and social care. This includes management of EPS, NHSmail, Summary Care Records (SCR), the NHS Spine, the Health and Social Care Network (HSCN), the Data Security and Protection Toolkit (DSPTK) etc. All of these NHS IT programmes will continue operating as before.
Commenting on the changes, PSNC’s Community Pharmacy IT Policy Manager, Daniel Ah-Thion, said:
“The changes to bring those managing NHS IT under one roof and enable a single, coordinated approach to NHS digital changes are welcomed. However the changes should not be used to clip the ambitions of the digital improvements needed such as development of health records accessible within pharmacy, seamless and standardised referral processes from other parts of the health system, EPS next generation enhancement, digitisation of pharmacy services and simplification of the Smartcard model.”