The seven mental health global digital exemplars have been announced by NHS England.

Revealed in the ‘Next Steps on the NHS Five Year Forward View’, published Friday, the trusts chosen are:

  • Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  • Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust
  • Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust
  • Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust
  • Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust
  • South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust
  • Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust

The report does not specify how much money the trusts will receive, nor the timescale, but said the selection is “subject to HM Treasury capital approvals”.

Prime minister, Theresa May, previously announced in January that each trust would receive £5 million, to be matched in each case with local funding.

This compares to the £10 million promised to the acute GDEs, again to be matched by local funding, that was promised in September last year.

According to Digital Health Intelligence all the winning trusts run either an Advanced or Servelec electronic patient record.

The document says: “While the NHS leads the world in the use of IT in primary care, the adoption of information technology in the acute, community and mental health sectors lags behind.”

The GDEs are intended to be the most advanced IT hospitals and serve as a “blueprint” for other less advanced trusts, said the report.

Digital Health News first reported in December that 11 mental health trusts were being invited to apply to become exemplars.

The invitation asked for a high-level description of the projects for which they need funding, how they will share and learn from others, their governance arrangements, including clinical leadership, and how they will manage clinical risk.

The exemplar programme, which is NHS England’s flagship digital programme, prioritises funding or already digitally advanced trust to both invest further in digital technology and provide a blueprint for other, less advanced trusts, to digitally transform later.

It is based on Robert Wachter’s review of NHS digital health, released in September last year.

The 12 acute trusts were announced in September, and since then four acute trusts have been announced but not confirmed until NHS England on Friday.

The acute GDEs were promised £100 million, with the funding due to arrive in the 2016-17 financial year.

With the money failing to materialise, concerns were mounting amongst trust IT leaders earlier this month.

It was finally confirmed on Wednesday, just days before the financial year end, via an NHS England letter that none of the promised investment would arrive in this financial year.