Your morning summary of digital health news, information and events to know about if you want to be “in the know”.   

👇 News  

🏥 Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) will welcome six new Governors who will support the organisation’s ongoing improvement work across its services. The Trust’s 32-seat Council of Governors represent the views of patients, public, staff and partners and help shape the future of the specialist mental health and learning disability services provided by the organisation. They hold NSFT’s Non-Executive Directors to account for the performance of the Board, and act as a key link between the Trust and the communities it serves. 

👵 Person Centred Software has announced that DepenSys has joined its family of products in a further expansion to its Connected Care offering. With this acquisition, over 6,000 care homes will have the ability to provide better care through better staff assignment based on matching staff capability and capacity with residents’ needs. 

📑 NHS Shared Business Services (NHS SBS) has signed a series of contracts for a procurement framework for intelligent automation services in the health service. The agency has published a contract award notice indicating that the framework could be worth up to £250 million over the next two years. 

🚬 Smoking-related hospital admissions in England increased by nearly 5% in 2022-23, compared to the previous year, but remain lower than before the Covid pandemic. Latest statistics from NHS England show that in 2022-23 there were an estimated 408,700 hospital admissions due to smoking, a rise from 389,800 in 2021-22 (an increase of 4.8%).  

🧫 Excessive antibiotic use and antimicrobial resistance are major global public health threats. Researchers have developed ePOCT+, a digital clinical decision support algorithm in combination with C-reactive protein test, hemoglobin test, pulse oximeter and mentorship, to guide health-care providers in managing acutely sick children under 15 years old, according to a study in Nature  

❓ Did you know that? 

Digidentity, a digital identity platform for healthcare providers, governments and businesses, has today published new research revealing that 97% of organisations in the healthcare sector are experiencing recruitment delays.   In addition to the adverse effect on staff morale and patient care,  each organisation is spending on average nearly £544,000 annually on locums and overtime to fill staffing gaps. In an industry where budgets are thinly stretched, particularly in the NHS, this cost diverts crucial resources away from essential healthcare services. That money could be used to hire 15 nurses per organisation, fund 1360 nights in NHS hospital beds or fund 5 full time GPS, the study said. 

📖 What we’re reading 

Digital technologies have emerged as a promising solution to transform mental health systems and meet our populations’ increasing mental health needs. Francesca Centola, Policy and Knowledge Officer at Mental Health Europe, outlines the principles that should guide such a digital transformation 

🚨 This week’s events 

23-24 December, Westminster Abbey, London – Festival of Lessons & Carols