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More digital nursing leaders needed ‘outside hospitals’

More digital nursing leaders needed ‘outside hospitals’
From left to right: QNI chief executive Dr Crystal Oldman, CNIO Simon Noel, interim national CNIO Helen Balsdon and chief nurse Professor Steve Hams

Action must be taken to ensure there are more digital nursing leaders across community and primary care settings, a conference has heard.

National interim chief nursing information officer (CNIO) at NHS England, Helen Balsdon, said the voices of digital nurse leaders must be heard ‘in all places of care’, and not just hospitals.

Speaking at this week’s Digital Health Rewired conference in Birmingham, nursing leaders explained how most CNIOs were based in hospitals, with only around six in community settings and just one known to be in primary care.

‘We need to make sure we’ve got a voice and that that voice is in all places of care,’ said Ms Balsdon.

‘We know when we look at our data, that we’ve got some great nurses, and I’m delighted to see so many familiar faces, but we need fresh faces in this space.’

She added: ‘But most of our CNIOs are in hospitals.’

While noting there were just six in mental health settings, Ms Balsdon continued: ‘We’ve got the same issue emerging community, there’s not many digital nurse leaders there. And yet, there’s so much to do and so much to harness.’

As part of our exclusive manifesto for GPNs, point 10 focused on the need for general practice to ‘continue to evolve to serve patients better, adopting approved digital platforms and applications to improve patient care and outcomes’

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