Following #Expo16NHS..I could be replaced… ‘technically’

And so another NHS Expo conference comes to an end. It was a lively 2 days with lots of amazing people coming together to share new ideas about the future of health and social care.

The conference was largely dominated by the digital and technical innovations that may help to create the NHS of the future (and make it better presumably)… I have always been interested in how technology may make a variety of health care improvements…I have written about one of my ideas here.

Sir @DrBruceKeogh providing a broad outline on recent ground breaking digital innovations

The digital news as reported by @keithgrimes was as follows:

  • Patients will be able to book appointments, order medications, and download records, US ‘Blue Button’ style, on a revamped http://www.nhs.uk to be launched at Expo 2017.
  • Anyone will be able to access detailed stats on performance in key areas such as dementia, diabetes, and learning disabilities
  • There will be online access to 111, which can lead to direct appointment, signposting, or callbacks.
  • By March 2017 there will be a directory of approved apps from March 2017, with subsequent support for wearables
  • 12 hospitals to become “Digital Exemplars” – each receiving £10m funding, matched by trust, and partnering with world leader organisations.
  • The creation of a second round of ‘national’ excellence centres, with more detail to follow.
  • The creation of an NHS Digital Academy to teach Informatics skills to NHS staff and create the next generation of Clinical Chief Information Officers and Digital Health Leaders.

And for more digital ideas….


Often, whilst working clinically as a midwife, I also find myself behaving like a robot… (Don’t worry… I obviously use my gut and intuition too)!…but really, as midwives we are calculating risk at all times….like a computer. Also…we follow certain pathways as midwives…if a blood pressure becomes out of range…we take the next prescribed step in making a referral or delivering a new treatment to fix it. A computer could do this.

Imagine a woman coming into a clinic to see a robot (of sorts). She is scanned, measured and given the full M.O.T that she would normally receive from a midwife, but it is the robot who calculates the risks and the next steps to take. At the end of the exam.. the robot gives the woman a print out report, which outlines what should be done next in light of any new findings. The robot can answer questions too…

…(hopefully better than google can)

…or it can tap into a Skype call with a registered health professional. Imagine a future like this..better or worse? In a pressured maternity service, this could indeed be the new way of things. Could I be replaced as a midwife?…’technically’?

I think not. But a digital future like this could certainly support midwives in practice. Would it be safer? are human errors more common than digital ones?… Certainly worth exploring I think.

What do women want from their midwife? A human face? compassion? Human touch?…None of these could be delivered by a robot (probably)… and so perhaps a digital future like this would afford midwives more time to be compassionate and ‘human’..


Also at Expo.. there was @roylilley….with @JaneMCummings

Singing ‘Always look on the bright side of life…’


Obviously they were doing this to celebrate and introduce 

..not far away now (19th October 2016)

And we also heard more singing as we enjoyed a very moving rendition of “I will try to fix you”…


By the @NHSChoir for the  at

from with bonus live sessions from

My colleagues and I also presented our #ShowsWorkplaceCompassion research for the first time and some of the other work we have been doing in partnership with @NHSEngland to commission for a positive staff experience. Thank you to everyone who came along and shared thoughts and ideas to help us shape this project.

I was also invited to join sessions on the

Maternity Transformation programme: Delivering the 2020 Vision at #Expo16NHS #MatImp #MatExp #BetterBirths #BUMP

and the …

@empathymuseum at #Expo16NHS #WalkAMileInMyShoes via @HealthFdn.

Click the links to read more….

Next year, I hope to be sharing more research and ideas. No doubt I will still be on my quest to improve the staff experience within health and social care..after all… patient experience and staff experience are both sides of the same coin..


See the Twitter activity from#Expo16NHS here

Until next time…be kind to yourselves, and eachother 💛💙💜💚❤


Round up summary blog of the Digital Health and Care Congress at @TheKingsFund #kfdigital16

#KFdigital16 Sally Pezaro

What does digital future look like?  I have spent this last week at @TheKingsFund enjoying the Digital health and Care Congress or

Presentations from (5/6 July) at available here

Twitter transcript here

Presentations available here

This was a detailed and busy conference, and probably the one I have enjoyed most so far! Everyone was really friendly and engaging…I also enjoyed the best audience I have seen in a while…It was too detailed and complex to outline everything within this blog post, so I will just highlight a few of my favourite moments below.

I was enamored by the work being done at Guy’s and St Thomas’ (@GSTTnhs) with the DrDoctor app…Guy’s and St Thomas’ had a challenge around DNA rates and patient engagement. They worked with DrDoctor to deliver improved clinic efficiency and better patient experience in outpatients, dropping DNA rates by 40% and saving hundreds of thousands of pounds in a matter of months. This really is exciting when you think of the implications for other acute areas.

DrDoctor (@DrDoctorApp)

DrDoctor helps patients talk to the NHS. Manage care online. Better outcomes and productivity for hospitals, better experience for patients. See the video below to see how they do this…

Thinking of my own project in developing an online intervention, I was also really interested to see the work of  The online mindfulness course. These guys really did have some impressive outcomes to share, which was great learning for me as I look to harness the best components of online support.

Stats below:

Also, thinking about my own midwifery work, it was great to see new online connections being made in the world of safeguarding and child protection with CP-IS services  allow multiple alerts to come up in acute areas of hospital trusts when a child enters the services who is deemed to be ‘at risk’. This means that clinicians over a wide geographical area can work together and save every child before they fall through the net.

#kfdigital16 2

Also in relation to my midwifery work, it was wonderful to see that one of the top 10 priorities of the Kings Fund is to provide integrated support for perinatal health. Doing this digitally will make this process so much more effective I’m sure…

#kfdigital16 7

I also very much enjoyed speaking to the iaptus team, who have created a patient management and reporting solution for psychological therapists providing cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and other related treatments. Great that this service can now move towards the digital age…

#kfdigital16 1

I also wanted to introduce you all to ClinTouch: A mobile support technology for people with psychosis


ClinTouch: Is a mobile support technology for people with psychosis

University of Manchester • clintouch.com

#kfdigital16 6

As we introduce new technology to patients, clinical staff often have preconceived ideas of how new interventions will impact upon the patient. This is what found in practice..This really highlights the what we perceive to be true as health professionals often is not the reality of the situations. Our patients can surprise us everyday, and we must always remain open to finding new ways to support them to use technology in health care as it emerges.

Lastly, we were introduced to the Caldicott review, and the national data guardian’s data security standards by Dame Fiona Caldicott ( National Data Guardian) …

Following this review.. an Independent patient data task force was announced The new task force will build on the work of the Caldicott review. It will be really interesting to see how this work develops…

Research into public attitudes towards commercial organisations accessing health data showed that people tended to accept others accessing their health data when it was clear that there was a public benefit. It also mattered who the organisation was, what kind of data was used and how it was being protected from misuse.

As the ‘NHS to scrap single database of patients’ medical details’ – We need to look at new ways to keep data secure and use it wisely and ethically…But what resources will be provided to help clinicians and staff have the difficult conversion with patients about the opt-out/opt-in options?? – A challenge awaits…

Fiona Caldicott kfdigital16

You can hear Dame Fiona Caldicott ( National Data Guardian) in the video below speaking about the Caldicott review….

Chris Ham

I also wanted to thank Chris Ham (@profchrisham) for announcing me as the winner of this fabuolus Fortnum and Masons hamper (devoured over this weekend). Apparently I was the most engaged with the conference app. This is what you get for being a social media geek ☺


The most poignant phrase put forward at this conference for me was that “People often have a warmer relationship with their smartphone than their psychiatrist” – This was said by Prof Shone Lewis at 

And lastly, for anyone who is too busy, or reluctant to change and embrace new technology in health care…remember….You may be standing in the way of vital improvements to make your working lives easier and your patients experience of care much better….

Let’s make sure we are all life long learners who are never too busy to improve..

Until next time – Take care of yourselves and each other…