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What do we mean by digital health and social care?
What do we mean by digital health and social care?

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The figure provides an overview of the future digital health and care landscape. The patient or service user is at its centre, surrounded by the patient facing technologies that provide them with opportunities to manage their health and social care and engage with health care providers. These include: Patient level – Online communities, patient records and shared electronic records; Professional level – vital signs monitoring, decision support and e-prescribing, patient to professional telehealth, mobile working, professional to professional telehealth, shared electronic records and e-learning tools; Organisational level – patient flow management, e-rostering, predictive analytics/risk assessment, shared electronic records, workflows, patient outcomes monitoring and business process support. The electronic records are in a different colour as they straddle all levels of the system as a whole, reflecting the pivotal role it plays in any digital strategy. It is the foundation on which many of the other apps are built. Next are the technologies that provide tools for health and care professionals. These include decision support, the capacity to access other professionals’ expertise, tools to prioritise and manage their clinical workload and tools to identify those patients at greatest risk. Finally are the technologies that support organisations, including tools for business process support, predictive analytics, flow management and e-rostering, which give new resource and clinical management capabilities to health care providers.
Figure 4 The benefits of digital technologies for patients, professionals and organisations.

 3.1 Advantages of digital health and social care technology