The Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock has announced a new bureaucracy-busting drive to empower frontline staff and build upon positive changes seen during the pandemic.
The announcement follows a call for evidence over the summer in which 600 respondents identified 1000 examples of excess bureaucracy they faced in their day-to-day jobs.
The report identifies 8 priority areas for action, including:
- Rethinking medical staff appraisals,
- Modernising professional regulation, and
- Reducing repetitive or duplicative data requests, which will be followed by a joint data strategy from NHSX and the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC).
Speaking at the NHS Confederation’s NHS Reset Conference, Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said:
“Of course, rules and regulations have their place. They can be the cornerstone of safe and high-quality care. But when left unchecked, rules and regulations can outgrow their original purpose – and they can stifle innovation and damage morale.
“Learning from the first peak, in July we set up a call for evidence on reducing bureaucracy in the health and social care systems. And I mean the system as a whole. We engaged with staff on the front line and spoke with dozens of stakeholder groups.
“The contributions we received have been so vital in lifting that x-ray up to the light, and illuminating those daily irritations that make people’s lives harder. Like onerous clearance processes, complicated appraisals, and slow discharges.
“And of course, the changes we need to make don’t always have to be big. In the pandemic, we’ve seen that little things can make a big difference, for instance letting doctors and nurses communicate with patients securely over WhatsApp or providing single logins across multiple different computers.
“I’m determined that we seize this moment and build on the very best of what we have seen over these past 9 months.”
For more information, please read the press release.