Kent County Council’s Being Digital Strategy

The What, The How & The Why

Kent County Council's Being Digital Strategy. Written by Rachael Letchford.

In today’s blog, we want to tell you about Kent County Council’s Being Digital Strategy for Adult Social Care and Health, 2019-2021. Anne Tidmarsh, Director of Partnerships for ASCH – “I am delighted to launch our Being Digital Strategy. This is an exciting time for us to implement the strategy and I am thrilled that the plans we have developed and are taking forward with our key partners will very much complement other forms of care and support and can bring about the maximum benefits to all.”

The What? – What is the Being Digital Strategy?

Our vision is to help people to achieve the best possible health and well-being outcomes, living independent and fulfilling lives in their own homes and communities by using digital innovation and technology.

The Strategy and implementation plan are built around five themes:

  • People; enabling people to do more for themselves and make use of intelligent information, tools and apps to increase their independence and improve their quality of life
  • Place; transforming the way services are delivered across all settings by improving connectivity and using innovative technology.
  • Practice; developing a more productive, capable and confident workforce by ensuring employees have the right digital tools and information and can work flexibly
  • Product; empowering and enabling service users to live more fulfilling and independent lives by utilising more advanced and innovative products where appropriate
  • Partnership; delivering better outcomes for people by enabling key partners to more easily collaborate, innovate and share information.

The Being Digital Strategy describes the changes which will be put in place over the next few years to complement more traditional forms of care and support. Technology will not be a replacement for care, however it can bring improvements in efficiency, effectiveness and help improve the overall quality of care.

Spastic young man with infantile cerebral palsy caused by a complicated birth sitting in a multifunctional wheelchair, using a computer with a wireless headset, reaching out to touch the touch screen.
Older lady using a tablet whilst sitting at a table

The How? – How will the Being Digital Strategy be delivered?

Over the past few of months, we have been working hard to develop plans for implementation. This has included engaging with staff from across KCC and key partners, working with other local authorities and using feedback from the staff and service user innovation workshops we hosted last year. Through listening to feedback and gathering best practice information, we are now shaping a comprehensive list of projects that we would like to deliver over the next three years.

Our ideas are focused around how we can enable people to do more for themselves, empower our workforce to be more confident and productive and improve the way we work with our partners.

The Why? – Why do we need a Being Digital Strategy?

The strategy sets out the strategic direction for digital innovation and technology to support the way we deliver adult social care.

There is an expectation that taking advantage of digital technology can help address some of the challenges the health and social care sector faces. These challenges include the increase in demand for services alongside less money available to pay for services. As well as these challenges, the expectation of our staff and people who use services is shifting towards being more digital.

We also stand a better chance of realising the objectives of Your Life, Your Wellbeing  a vision and strategy for Adult Social Care and Health 2016 – 2021, by turning the ideas in the Being Digital strategy into reality.

The full Being Digital Strategy is available to view here

Close up portrait of handicapped boy outdoors with digital tablet.