£25m boost for digital services across Welsh NHS

An extra £25m investment will help the NHS to continue the move to more digital services, Health and Social Services Minister Vaughan Gething said today.

The funding boost is part of the draft Budget 2021-22 and is supporting the response to the coronavirus pandemic, including contact tracing and the vaccination programme, as well as the rollout of new video consultations and remote working in the NHS.

The extra £25m will speed-up the use of digital ways of working and help the NHS and social services adopt new technologies to improve services.

It will also support the transformation of digital systems in hospitals, the ambulance service and social care sector and enable continued targeted funding for vital services, such as intensive care, cancer, and eye care.

Minister for Health and Social Services, Vaughan Gething said:

“Stepping up our digital investment at this pace and scale alongside our response to the pandemic and other pressures has been a challenge but it is a priority.

“The additional funding announced today will help us to invest in mobile devices, remote working and video consultation, and accelerate other strategic transformation projects.”

Remote working and video consultation technology have enabled NHS services to continue throughout the pandemic, reducing the need for face-to-face contact.

One service, which has benefited from this new way of working has been children’s speech therapy. Using online video consultations, healthcare professionals have been able to deliver services from home.

As we continue to face the challenges of this evolving pandemic the Welsh Government will be working closely with digital leaders across NHS Wales to identify existing programmes that can be accelerated thanks to these additional funds.

The extra funding will help to deliver a £175m investment in strategic digital transformation between September 2019 and March 2022.