Below is a brief overview of professional bodies and organisations in Scotland which may be relevant to digital health and care innovations. InDHC will draw on their expertise and collaborate where appropriate.
Working on digital health and care:
Scottish Government eHealth Division
eHealth Division is part of the Scottish Government’s Health & Social Care Directorate-General, and answers to the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing & Sport.
Their activities focus on three key areas:
- eHealth policy and strategy
- eHealth technical strategy and governance
- Information assurance and governance
The scope of eHealth Division’s work includes all national-level aspects of IT systems, digital tools and platforms, information and records management, process change and skills development required for healthcare delivery, including primary, secondary and community care, health and social care integration, and self-care and telehealth.
They also have a list of relevant eHealth Governance Groups on their website: http://www.ehealth.nhs.scot/groups/
Their activities are guided by the eHealth Strategy for Scotland to 2017. At the moment, they are currently developing a new, integrated, Digital Health and Social Care Strategy for 2017-22.
The Scottish Centre for Telehealth and Telecare (SCTT)
The Scottish Centre for Telehealth and Telecare (SCTT) supports Scotland’s aim to progress technology enabled care, performing key functions on behalf of Scotland and NHS 24.
They can help you by:
- leading the design and development of new services;
- providing consultancy and facilitation services;
- supporting knowledge transfer and shared learning;
- engaging internationally to secure additional funding and build expertise for the benefit of Scotland.
Digital Health and Care Institute (DHI)
The Digital Health and Care Institute (DHI) helps address modern health and care challenges through the development of new ideas for digital health technology and information services.
DHI partners and members have created a community of like-minded people, who contribute insight, know-how, funding and research to help turn the spark of an idea into something that can make a real impact in how health and social care is delivered. Crucially, DHI’s ideas must lead to viable and affordable products and services that can be brought to market in Scotland and beyond, establishing Scotland as an exporter of digital health and care technologies.
They can help you by:
- connecting you to the right people
- providing you with the means to identify, design, evaluate and invest in new solutions
British Computer Society Health Scotland
BCS, The Chartered Institute for IT, promotes wider social and economic progress through the advancement of information technology science and practice.
British Computer Society Health Scotland is a multi-professional group that aims to promote the development and use of Health Informatics in Scotland to support effective, evidence-based health and social care in areas of research, education, practice, and management decision making. This is intended to benefit both the general public and professionals.
They can help you by:
- Acting as a consultation mechanism for relevant national and international projects and standards on health informatics.
- Establishing links with research, academic, educational, government, industry, charities, patient and community groups.
- Initiating health informatics projects.
University of Strathclyde Digital Health and Wellness group
The research interests of the University of Strathclyde Digital Health and Wellness group are work person-centered digital health & wellness services and products. They are working on several projects with charities, NHS, industry and public sector bodies to develop usable and effective digital health & wellness products and services to reduce inequalities, improve people’s lives and transform the way health and care is delivered and accessed globally.
Scottish Lifesciences Association Digital Health special interest group
This group enables collaboration between member companies, covering personal health software development, telehealthcare systems implementation, health data mining, and life sciences risk analysis systems.
You can find out more on the Scottish Lifesciences Association website.
The Farr Institute supports health informatics research across the UK. They work to improve and create dialogue between researchers and the general public, as well as working with partners across a multitude of sectors.
They can help you by:
- offering expertise in health data research and related fields
Working on wider innovation:
Healthcare Improvement Scotland
Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS) work with services and the public to make seven key contributions to health and social care:
- Supporting people to have a meaningful say in how services are designed, delivered and experienced.
- Providing independent quality assurance.
- Supporting providers to redesign services so that people in Scotland are able to live longer, healthier lives at home or a homely setting.
- Supporting services to reduce harm, waste and unnecessary variation in practice and outcomes.
- Providing evidence and knowledge that enables people to get the best out of the services that they use and helps services to improve.
- Supporting the use of data and information, alongside bespoke support, to help services to improve.
- Supporting leaders to create the conditions where quality will flourish.
The Improvement Hub (or ihub for short) will support Health and Social Care Partnerships and NHS boards to improve the quality of health and social care services. The ihub can support you by:
- creating the context and cultures for improvement to happen
- building the knowledge and skills to do the work of improvement
- providing expertise in evidence, evaluation and knowledge exchange, and
- supporting innovation
The Scottish Health Technologies Group (SHTG) is an advisory group set up to provide assistance to NHSScotland boards when considering selected health technologies.
Their remit is to provide advice on the evidence about the clinical and cost effectiveness of existing and new technologies likely to have significant implications for patient care in Scotland. This advice should support the planning and decision making processes in NHS boards. This includes a horizon scanning function to provide early intelligence on health technologies in development.
Their meetings are open to members of the public and media to observe. This enables stakeholders and members of the public to understand how evidence is assessed and interpreted, how consultation comments are taken into account and how SHTG advice is made.
You can suggest topics of interest to the Scottish Health Technologies Group. More information regarding this is available on their website.
NESTA Health Lab
Nesta’s Health Lab is a centre of expertise on people-powered and data-driven health. They work with partners from the health, care, voluntary and social enterprise sectors to test and scale new ideas.
Health Lab tests and scales new ways for people to remain healthy – drawing on:
- New sources of support – to make it possible for people to be more involved in their health
- New sources of data- to improve people’s knowledge about their health
- New sources of innovation- that can generate new solutions
The Data Lab
The Data Lab enables industry, the public sector and world-class academics to innovate and develop new data science capabilities in a collaborative environment. The Data Labs core mission is to generate significant economic, social and scientific value from data for Scotland.
With hubs in Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow, The Data Lab is focused on building relationships locally and delivering a range of activities that span three key areas:
- Collaborative innovation
- Community building
- Skills and training
Stratified Medicine Scotland Innovation Centre (SMS-IC)
SMS-IC is a unique collaboration in life sciences. They bring together experts from industry, the NHS and academia to develop safer, more effective therapies and diagnostic tools for the management of chronic diseases.
SMS-IC works with a range of organisations including:
- Pharmaceutical and Biotech companies – both local or global – in need of research and clinical development support
- Healthcare providers looking to optimise treatment options
- Organisations in need of consultancy and other technical support in stratified medicine
- Medical diagnostic companies looking to develop disease-specific genetic based screening panels
- Academic institutions seeking collaboration partners for individual research projects
- Life sciences companies looking for local genetic sequencing expertise and support outside the fields of human health
Interface aims to help organisations to create and improve products, streamline services and develop processes which have enabled them to increase profits, maximise export potential and ultimately become more sustainable.
They facilitate collaborative partnerships between all industry sectors, including charity, social enterprise and third sectors, helping businesses work together on key industry challenges.
Working on digital issues:
The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO)
SCVO are leading Scotland’s movement to help people develop basic digital skills. They undertook work to:
- reach those individuals missing out on the benefits of being online in order to build their confidence and skills;
- encourage the third sector to better understand and develop the skills to take advantage of the opportunities presented by new technology and the internet; and
- support collaboration across the public, private and third sectors to address these issues.
They can help you by:
- supporting knowledge sharing through their OneDigital Meetups
- offering you access to digital platforms to find relevant stories (Good HQ), funding (Funding Scotland) and promote job opportunities (Goodmoves)
The Cyber Academy, based at Edinburgh Napier University, is an independent and impartial source of skills and knowledge on cyber security, supporting Scotland’s businesses and communities to be secure and successful online.
They teach digital investigation and evidence gathering at a number of levels and can provide short tailored designed training courses for professionals.
Other relevant resources:
Scotland’s digital strategy, published on 22nd March 2017. Available at: beta.gov.scot/publications/realising-scotlands-full-potential-digital-world-digital-strategy-scotland