NHS trust heads expect more government funding to become ‘paperless’


Research by Vanson Bourne commissioned by Perceptive Software has found that the majority of heads of NHS trusts are expecting the government to foot the bill for them to become ‘paperless.’

200 NHS workers were interviewed between August and October this year, with over half of heads of trusts claiming that it is a realistic goal to become paperless by 2018. However, only a fifth of IT decision makers and other healthcare professionals agreed.

Many of the survey respondents thought that 2021 was a more realistic goal to go paperless. Of the trusts that have yet to digitize 100% of patient data, 58% said that the process will take a further two to five years to complete.

Mark O’Herlihy, Healthcare Director EMEA, at Perceptive Software commented, “It’s very positive to see the initiative is being welcomed with open arms with over 9 in 10 NHS workers aware of it and the majority (71%) indicating their clear support. Too often in the past, NHS IT initiatives have split workers on their benefits so this bodes well for success as we progress past paperlight and paperless milestones.”

“Although there may be budget concerns and the need for better communication between heads of trusts and IT decision makers, we do need to be realistic, because it’s no mean feat digitising thousands upon thousands of medical files and processes within multiple departments and trusts across the country. Whether the end goal is 2018 or 2021, one hundred per cent of heads of NHS trusts believe digitising medical records will improve patient faith in the NHS. At a time when patient centric care is the upmost priority, it’s good to see that’s what our healthcare system is aiming for,” O’Herlihy added.

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