As a result of digital progress and the pandemic, healthcare providers are turning more to technology when providing treatment.
It has been published in multiple national guidelines, to make maternity services safer and more personalised every pregnant person should have access to their own digital records, empowering them to make informed decisions about their care.
A Norfolk and Waveney overview audit was completed in 2021, within which it was recognised that Norfolk and Waveney communities are 20% of the most deprived in England.
Digital exclusion is often linked to deprivation. Digital exclusion is described as when people are unable to exploit benefits of technology, which are used to make health and care services more accessible, flexible and person centred.
Norfolk and Waveney LMNS were allocated funding, to help address the issue of digital exclusion within our maternity services by working alongside our Digital midwives and Norfolk Libraries identifying and providing service users with a free digital device and access to the internet.
The expected outcome of the project is to target our digitally excluded cohort and to improve digital inclusion across Norfolk and Waveney maternity services, enabling us to provide more standardised care, ensuring all our pregnant persons have access to the same information and resources.
Successes so far
The project is still in the pilot phase however, key successes include.
- Already identified service users who are eligible and providing them with access to a free digital device and access to the internet.
- Building positive networks with other teams across Norfolk and Waveney including Norfolk County Council, to help identify our most vulnerable and deprived patients ensuring they are aware of the scheme.