NHS Trusts get another chance to apply for £500 million of tech fund cash, as phase 2 is launched

The second wave of the £500 million ‘Integrated Digital Care Fund’, (formerly the ‘Safer Hospitals, Safer Wards Technology Fund’), opens to applications today.

NHS Trusts, and now Local Authorities, can apply for part of £240 million of funding to digitise and integrate patient information across the health and care sector, driving improvements in patient care.

It builds on the first wave of £260 million of Department of Health capital funding announced by NHS England last July to support NHS Trusts to digitise records and develop electronic systems for prescribing medicines quicker and more accurately.

Beverley Bryant, Director of Strategic Systems and Technology at NHS England, said: “The focus for health and care staff is their patients but historically, staff have had to work within the limitations of paper records and slow bureaucratic systems.

“Digitisation removes this barrier – staff don’t need to wait for a set of paper records to be transferred to where their patient is – they can be available at the touch of a button by the staff who need them, when they need them.

“Demands on healthcare are increasing and we need to be smarter in the way we deliver care. Modern technology, when used well, provides a string to our bow that we didn’t have twenty years ago. We need to continue to embrace it as a tool for great patient care.”

The application process for wave two of the Integrated Digital Care Fund will run until 14 July 2014. The £240 million will be split – 2014/15 (£160m) and 2015/16 (£80m).  Applications will be reviewed by a multidisciplinary team to ensure the funding will deliver benefits for staff and patients and value for money.

Organisations which are eligible to apply are NHS Trusts, Foundation Trusts and local authorities. Applications will be limited to one per individual organisation and one per joint/partnership application.

More information is available in the application prospectus.


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  1. Paul Munim says:

    We want to see a process where patients can be referred to local community organisations incorporated into proposals. We know that many people access hospitals without thinking about the preventative help they could have accessed from their local community organisations.Also it would be useful for NHS staff to have a system where local community organisations can be informed that a person is being discharged and what services they can offer. Many local organisations have volunteers and offer befriending services where a volunteer can visit a patient after discharge to make sure they are ok and that they are seeing their GP which is crucial to prevent readmission.

    Our website [Link removed] is a directory of local organisations that can be postcode searched so that patients can be told of which organisations they can approach or a simple form can be filled out on our website and we can take care of that process. We suggest it makes sense for NHS trusts to make more use of local organisations as they are a source of local support and they provide free services.

  2. This ‘bidding’ idea stinks.

    Our health is not a matter of ‘bidding’.

    We pay for the service. We expect that service to be provided.

    Incompetent Trusts/Governing bodies need to be sacked.

    The money needs to be spread according to need.. not under some stupid bidding scheme, to make us all ‘race for the top’. We do not need to race. We need our money to be used to its best advantage.

    Stop playing stupid games with our already-paid-for-services!

    We also need to be rid of those ‘neer-do-weels’ who constantly sweep round the spiral of incompetence, gaining more of our cash as they go.

  3. Dr Peter Crouch says:

    Why are CCG’s not able to apply? This seems to me to be a real block to whole system reform. We have plans for innovative technological advance that embodies the aims of this programme but are prevented from applying on behalf of our healthcare community because only NHS Trusts, Local Authorities and Foundation Trusts are able to apply. Could this not be relaxed for innovative schemes on merit?

    Dr Peter Crouch
    Clinical Chair
    Swindon Clinical Commissioning Group