Establishing best practice is the key to NHS adoption

Next week, we expect a series of announcements about the NHS that will shape the future of healthcare. The NHS Long Term Plan will lay the blueprint for the future of NHS. It will also detail spending plans for the extra £20.5bn government investment in the over the next five years. Once the plan is released and implementation planning begins, it will be a key time to engage.

Meanwhile, the Health and Social Care Secretary, Matt Hancock, has outlined his top priorities as prevention, digitisation and workforce. A new Workforce Strategy is to be published imminently and a green paper on prevention is also due in early 2019. To cap it all off, there will also be a green paper consulting on the long-term funding plan for social. There’s a lot going on and a lot of opportunities if you know where to look.

Establishing best practice

To realise its long-term aspirations, the NHS is keen to identify and replicate best practice services, which improve health outcomes and deliver financial efficiencies. Engaging with national NHS leadership can help to establish your systems as national models of best practice. This can accelerate adoption, putting top-down pressure on trusts and commissioners to take action.

Thought leadership

Awareness is key to adoption. Media activity can raise your profile with your target market. Furthermore, strategic events and engagement with health think-tanks can position you as experts and thought-leaders in your space, providing solutions to the day-to-day challenges faced in the NHS.

Research-led strategy

To engage effectively, organisations need to understand how the changing healthcare landscape will affect them. This includes appreciating the implications of NHS transformation, including the development of integrated care systems (ICS), and regional variance on your organisation. Meaningful activity therefore requires research-led strategy. So, what does the current and future policy and funding picture mean for your service offering?

Such research will provide a basis for positioning your organisations in the NHS market and developing strategic and tactical plans. Development of a tailored strategy can allow organisations to take advantage of the current healthcare landscape. It can also get systems, products, and process adopted in day to day practice.

Market mapping

You also need to know your audience. Detailed stakeholder and market mapping can help organisation to pursue targeted and effective engagement. A combination of expertise, spend data, and Freedom of Information requests, as well as desk-based research, can build the tailored intelligence to prepare for engagement with your audience.

So what can GK Strategy do to help?

Health is GK Strategy’s largest policy area. We live and breathe health policy day-in and day-out for clients across the health and social care system. Our breadth is our strength. We approach the holistic nature of healthcare with the fluidity and expertise it requires. Furthermore, GK know the decision makers and influencers in the health market and are experienced at working in highly regulated areas and helping to navigate complex markets and relationships.

We combine this knowledge with an understanding of your organisation, supported by our own and public data, primary research and expert analysis to help to build complex strategies that underpin commercial success. We are communications experts, advising on how to promote issues, build profile and protect reputations in the complex multifaceted UK health market.

GK Strategy can help you to establish your services as best practice. We can campaign for the right levers to be deployed to incentivise uptake and prime the health system for rapid adoption. Our teams work to develop a set of clear and coherent messages about the benefits your products or service can have for NHS Trusts and how this delivers on NHS priorities. We can also conduct workshops, involving your key staff, to help organisations set the communications objectives and develop an integrated strategy to needed to achieve them.

Despite having an offer which can improve patient care and deliver efficiencies, organisations can struggle to get good innovations adopted. Knowing how to communicate and engage can make all the difference. With the health sector going through a period of chance, if you have the right strategy there are plenty of opportunities. It’s time seize them.

Take a look at a case study of our work in the health sector here. For more information, please get in touch below.

See more articles by Edward Jones