Strategy, Policy and Collaborative Frameworks (HBI132)

Module Objective

In order to provide high-quality bioinformatics in physical sciences services it is important that the Clinical Scientist in the HSST scheme is aware of and engaged in both: (i) local and national strategies in their application domain; and (ii) local and national policies relevant to their practice. The quality of patient services can be greatly enhanced by exploiting and creating collaborative frameworks. HSST trainees will learn about the frameworks that exist and how to use then to improve patient service.

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be able to analyse, synthesise and apply their knowledge and understanding of the strategic direction of the NHS and healthcare provision within the context of the factors external to the service that influence its provision. For example, medical devices are increasingly found outside the traditional hospital environment and appropriate application of bioinformatics strategies, policies and collaborative frameworks will be an important factor in ensuring patient safety.

The Clinical Scientist in HSST will also be expected to consistently demonstrate the attitudes and behaviours necessary for the role of a CCS.

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be able to analyse, synthesise, evaluate and critically apply their expert knowledge within the context of the factors external to the service that influence its provision, including:

Strategy

  • Current NHS information strategies.
  • Current NHS national, local and departmental structures underpinning information management and technology strategies.
  • The structure of the healthcare organisation, responsibilities for setting strategy and alignment with national NHS strategy, relationships with external stakeholders, the strategic planning cycle.
  • The strategic requirements for service innovation and research – the identification of opportunities, supporting colleagues to innovate, and taking an idea from conception to clinical practice within ethical and governance frameworks.

Policy

  • Current government policy with respect to clinical data and adherence to medical device safety and regulations.
  • Current national and international policy underpinning advanced networked computerised medical devices for patient management and the provision of safe, high-quality therapy, diagnostics and monitoring.
  • Working environment and ergonomics.

Collaborative frameworks

  • Stakeholders:
    • Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs);
    • Health and Social Care Information Centre and IT departments, e.g. Digital Road Maps;
    • public health bodies, e.g. Public Health England;
    • community outreach projects;
    • Hospital at Home/personalised care/wearable devices;
    • remote working – providing, tele-reporting;
    • working with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), universities, industrial partners;
    • patients/public.
  • Collaboration arrangements and the division of responsibilities between the physical science unit, the equipment suppliers and the hospital IT and informatics departments, with possible associated outsourced responsibilities such as network management.
  • Boundaries with collaborators, legal and operational.
  • Collaboration with/between:
    • inter-directorate;
    • research groups;
    • industrial/commercial partners, e.g. product collaboration; 
    • patients, patient groups and carers.

Governance

  • Clinical governance implications on the CCS’s area of service provision/expertise.
  • Legislation.
  • Information governance and data management applied to all data that the CCS is responsible/accountable for.
  • Ethical and security requirements.

Implementation

  • Service-level agreements and managed services.
  • Procurement and leasing models, including capital and revenue.
  • How to lead contractual negotiations with third-party service/product providers.
  • Evaluation, including benefits realisation.
  • The use and economies of scale – system redundancy, shared storage resources, back-up resources and contingency/high availability system provision.
  • The uses, values and risks in virtualisation and in cloud computing, including third-party storage of clinical data.

By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be able to critically apply their knowledge and understanding to risk assess, propose, develop and evaluate investigative strategies/procedures/processes that take account of relevant clinical and scientific evidence and other sources of information. They will also be expected to critically reflect on their performance and apply in practice a range of clinical skills, and will be able to:

  • Assess the scientific, technical, economic and clinical evidence base underpinning the safe and effective operation of clinical computing service in light of NHS initiatives and legislation, and report to the appropriate governance or management group in their organisation on compliance with regulations, alerting the appropriate governance group on non-compliances and suggesting remedial actions. 
  • Sensitively and professionally manage and lead, as appropriate, communications and relationships with the stakeholders involved in medical computing equipment, clinical data and infrastructure management.
  • Work with colleagues to develop business cases to support medical computing equipment and infrastructure procurement and clinical data analysis, including evaluating the feedback and outcome of the procurement bid.
  • Work with clinical staff to develop and write specifications for medical computing equipment and infrastructure that will form the basis for tenders, including developing the criteria against which clinical systems will be compared, considering the environment in which the equipment will be installed.
  • Work with clinical staff to evaluate and select medical computing equipment and infrastructure against the criteria.
  • Project manage the installation, upgrade, acceptance, critical examination and commissioning of computing equipment, including the generation of base-line performance data for future assessments.
  • Lead on contractual arrangements for maintenance, including performance monitoring, up- time targets and record keeping.
  • Monitor and advise on continuing value for money in relation to maintenance and repair arrangements, exploiting local, regional and national initiatives.
  • Advise on the safe and secure decommissioning and disposal of medical computing equipment, including data, in accordance with relevant regulatory frameworks.
  • Advise on the applicability of general corporate IT solutions and policies on the clinical environment.
  • Advise on advances in the clinical computing environment that may be applicable in the general hospital IT environment.
  • Advise and implement safe networking procedures to provide and protect clinical and non- clinical computing solutions.
  • Provide explanations of clinical data within the context of the systems they are accountable for and provide solutions for clinical data analysis.
  • Perform reviews of the physical science service computer infrastructure, including the proposal of a replacement schedule, outlining anticipated upgrades, confirming the adequacy of network utility and back-up storage capacity, together with any necessary manpower developments. Budget consequences should be included.
  • Support procurement and upgrading hardware and software used for physical sciences applications.
  • Lead and manage resource planning for network or hardware reconfiguration and testing.
  • Provide objective advice on medical computing equipment and infrastructure management strategic issues.
  • Influence, lead and support staff in the department/organisation to create a culture that recognises the importance of quality and quality improvement in the delivery of physical science services.
  • Adapt communication skills while working with a range of stakeholders, including patients, clinical and technical staff, suppliers and other external contractors, listening and being sensitive to the views of each stakeholder and ensuring their views are respected.
  • Regularly review the evidence base underpinning the practice of Physical Sciences to ensure adaptation to practice can be made in a timely and cost-effective manner.
  • Reflect on the challenges of applying research to practice in relation to these areas of practice and suggest improvements, building on a critique of available evidence.