All medicines are poisons. Everything that cures could kill if administered in the wrong doses, to the wrong people, at the wrong times, in the wrong ways.
The future looks incredibly promising for analysis and analysts in the NHS. I can’t remember a time when the environment looked so conducive. Over the next few years, analysts will get plenty of opportunities to make a real difference to the NHS and the people it serves. And at the moment, the NHS needs all the help it can get.
The Midlands Decision Support Network in association with The Strategy Unit are hosting INSIGHT 2022 our annual festival of learning and sharing events for the NHS, local government and other partners across health and care.
We hear a lot about what’s stopping the NHS making the most of its army of talented analysts. Some say we just need more data, or data of better quality. Others point to deficiencies in our infrastructure, IT kit or the software we use. But I’m not so sure. For me the biggest shortfall is in good questions that we can feasibly address.
In June 1976, the Sex Pistols played Manchester's Lesser Free Trade Hall. The concert turned out to be so important to music history that the usual comparisons are Woodstock and Live Aid. Under 40 people went that night, but the numbers subsequently claiming to ‘have been there when…’ are in the thousands.
‘I saw them before they were famous’ is a well-worn brag of music snobs. Yet this is our abiding feeling having facilitated AphA’s (the Association of Professional Healthcare Analysts) recent strategy away day.
What is an ‘Intelligence Function’? What value can they add to decision making? How can they be configured and who needs to be involved? What lessons can be drawn from current practice?
Part of the Strategy Unit mission is to improve the use of analysis in decision making. Current use is, to employ a euphemism, variable.
Our mission takes multiple forms:
The Intellectual Forum: a source of fresh perspectives on decision making
9th November 2021
The literature on decision making is like a disaster movie highlights reel. Barely has one calamity registered before another serious misstep takes its place. Case study after case study flashes past, each with its own lessons and warnings.
The Midlands Decision Support Network in association with The Strategy Unit hosted INSIGHT 2021 our annual festival of learning and sharing events for the NHS, local government and other partners across health and care (4th – 15th October).
The number of outpatient attendances in England is now approaching 100 million each year. In 2017/18, the estimated cost of this care was over £9 billion - or 8% of the total NHS England budget.
Yet there are significant gaps in our knowledge. We don’t know enough about the purpose and function of outpatient appointments. Without this knowledge, the NHS will struggle to ensure that the billions spent on these services are delivering best value for the patient and the public.