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Understanding factors that enabled digital service change in general practice during the Covid-19 pandemic

The Covid-19 pandemic prompted rapid uptake of existing digital technologies to deliver patient care differently in general practice. This report looks at how services changed and the digital tools and services that were used to facilitate that change. It looks particularly at the wider factors that enabled change and what might need to be done to sustain these changes after the response to the pandemic.

The authors draw together lessons that can be learnt from experience and suggest how policy-makers can facilitate sustained change. They examine infrastructure and interoperability issues that impeded both the speed and quality of implementation; procurement and information governance processes; and local support to practices and health systems to support implementation, both in terms of supporting the introduction of the technology itself and in supporting the change management and system redesign at a practice level.

This report was commissioned by the Department of Health and Social Care through the Partnership for Responsive Policy Analysis and Research (PREPARE), a collaboration between The King’s Fund and the University of York.