When James @@Psycle_Doc contacted me with an idea for an NHS Change Day pledge I jumped at the opportunity – supporting and inspiring NHS staff to talk tech has been my mission during 2013 and a big focus of my PhD research as well.
I’m most definitely not a techie, but I’ve seen again and again, people using social media platforms in creative ways to share information, have conversations and support each other – both as people accessing services and as professionals (and often both).
Many professionals I speak to have all sorts of worries about social networking but this is even more of a reason to talk tech – to make sense of it and understand what it means for day to day practice and for professional development. The NHS Employers #NHSEngage campaign is all about encouraging a permissive use of social media and it’s no surprise that the Health Service Journal’s 2014 list of 25 rising stars has a strong tech theme, including recognising Teresa Chinn for establishing her @WeNurses online community of nurses.
People’s lives increasingly revolve around social networking platforms for conversation and mobile phone applications for the basics of day to day living – from google maps through to online banking. Why wouldn’t we expect the same to manage a health condition if it means we can take more control ourselves, improve our experience and even possibly improve our outcomes?
Another reason to talk tech is to understand the barriers that some people accessing services face. A recent report found that 51% of disabled people have never used the Internet and as the Government increasingly moves more and more of our transactions online they will increasingly be at risk of exclusion. Digital won’t be for everyone but everyone should have the opportunity.
Our NHS change Day pledge is: as people who access services, as NHS practitioners, as managers and leaders, we pledge to have a conversation about how technology can help us live well – James will be doing this in his clinical practice and I’ll be talking with people accessing services and staff to deepen our collective understanding of the opportunities and challenges tech presents to us all in 2014.
We’d love to have your support! Please click here to either like or join the pledge – it’s that simple. And why wait for NHS Change Day? You could start now (and if you already have then please let us know).
And here’s a link to James’ blog Ideas over Opinions for a post about the pledge (to be uploaded shortly).
Happy New Year and here’s to talking tech in 2014.