Twelve councils have been chosen by NHS Digital and the Local Government Association to share funding to explore social care digital innovation ideas and how technology could help shape the future of social care.
Scoping proposals range from how biometric technology might be used to assist people with learning disabilities and autism in the Wirral to how skills passports might help the social care workforce streamline employment checks and statutory training between providers in the London Borough of Havering.
Twelve councils have been awarded £20,000 each in the first ‘discovery’ phase of funding, to investigate local challenges that could be addressed using digital technology. Six will then be chosen to receive further funding of up to £80,000 to design and implement their solution.
In total, 80 local authorities applied for the funding, out of a total of 133 councils that were eligible. The successful councils are:
- Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council.
- Bracknell Forest Council.
- South Tyneside Council.
- Lincolnshire County Council.
- Nottingham City Council.
- London Borough of Havering.
- London Borough of Haringey.
- Shropshire Council.
- Cambridgeshire County Council.
- Isle of Wight Council.
- Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council.
- Sunderland City Council.
James Palmer, Programme Lead for the Social Care Programme at NHS Digital, said, 'The successful projects span a wide range of areas, from assistive technologies to predictive analytics. This funding will give the local authorities a chance to identify and investigate a local problem before testing out a potential solution. They will be sharing their experiences from the pilot projects, adding to our collective knowledge of how digital can effectively be used to support the delivery of adult social care.
'There are some really exciting proposals this year and I am looking forward to seeing the outcomes.'
Elected Mayor Kate Allsop, Digital Lead on the LGA’s Community and Wellbeing Board, said, 'The councils selected have chosen some important areas to address ranging from exploring new methods of linking residents with community resources to addressing social care provider workforce shortages. In the next three months, they will be engaging with users to explore whether there are digital solutions to improve the lives and experiences of people needing social care. Projects will be designed around the needs of service users and complement the work of health and social care professionals. We will ensure that learning is shared across the sector.'