The NHS Commissioning Board has outlined fresh details of its drive to bring together information from a range of official and unofficial sources to provide a picture of NHS service providers’ quality.
The board’s national director for patients and information, Tim Kelsey, said a new “dashboard” iPad application would be published from April.
The tool will bring together information from official sources, such as complaints and patient satisfaction feedback and unofficial sources, such as conversations about services on Twitter, and Google searches.
The plans are set out in a paper due to be discussed at a meeting of the board due to take place on Thursday. It says the “insight dashboard” will be “central to the way we hold ourselves [to] account to patients and citizens”.
It will be updated monthly to “provide a triangulated set of measures reflecting both feedback to the NHS from patients using NHS services and conversations being had about the NHS”.
It will provide a national overview as well as details of individual organisations; and incorporate as much near real-time data as possible, it said.
The paper said the dashboard will provide two views. One will be based on information about patient experience, including data from NHS Choices, the friends and family test, complaints reporting, and patient surveys.
Other view, the paper said “will be provided showing information about ‘conversations’ being had ‘about’ the NHS. This will include data from NHS Choices, NHS 111, YouGov, Ipsos Mori and others”.
It said: “This view will incorporate data from a range of online media sources covering the following areas: volume of ‘conversations’; sentiment; trending topics; key words and overall volume of comments by media type e.g. twitter, mainstream news.”
A dashboard covering acute care will be published as an Ipad application from April 2013, and dashboards covering mental health, primary care and specialised commissioning will be developed subsequently.
Mr Kelsey is also due to outline plans to the board for a new community assembly to “enable a civil society movement that brings transparent accountability and a powerful voice for patients and the public to the NHS Commissioning Board”.
The “civil society assembly”, which would work closely with Healthwatch England, would be an independent national body which would have a virtual identity through social media and online forums and meet up once or twice a year.
A board paper said: “The assembly could be a route through which data and information about our health and care is publicly available, debated and interpreted.”