A number of local authorities and NHS partnerships across the country have successfully bid for a share of £1.4m to help digitise their assessment, discharge and withdrawal (ADW) notices.
NHS Digital announced the successful bids were Dorset, Hackney, Lancashire, Wirral, Worcestershire, Hertfordshire and Rotherham.
The partnerships were selected by an expert panel, assessing the bids on a range of criteria such as the demonstrated strength of local partnership working, supplier commitment, understanding and mitigation of risks and the overall value for money.
James Palmer, programme head for the social care programme at NHS Digital, said: “This funding isn’t going to be the whole solution to delays in transfers of care but as a digital substitute for faxes and post, these projects will help smooth the process of moving statutory key information from a healthcare setting to local authority social care.
“Further assurance comes in the form of electronic notifications, letting hospitals know that their notices have been received by the local authority.
“This will help to remove some of the pinch points in the hospital discharge process through helping health and social care to integrate their IT systems.”
ADW notices are to be used to support the discharge of hospital patients that are considered to have social care needs.
The current, non-digital systems in place to handle ADWs had been identified by local authorities and their NHS partners as one of the stumbling blocks to the transfer of care from health to social care settings.
This led NHS Digital to develop a solution using existing NHS national infrastructure and to offer funding for partnerships to both act as early adopters and to develop the core technology so that it could be used by other areas at minimum cost.