How Dr Foster’s pioneering new service will deliver more consistent and meaningful data analysis for NHS organisations

When it comes to quality data analysis, having the right tools in place to monitor and capture data is only half the battle. Equally important is having the right people in place to interpret the data in a meaningful way. In the NHS, when data analysis requires a quick turnaround, limited internal resources mean organisations often rely on external contractors for assistance.

Not only is hiring external contractors costly, it also means the analysis is carried out by someone that may not have the NHS experience, or specialist statistical skills that quality data analysis demands. It also means a potential loss of knowledge once the analysis is finished and the contractor moves on.

In Dr Foster’s work with NHS trusts, we saw a need for more tailored, in-depth and consistent data analysis. For this reason, we have developed a pioneering new analytical service for NHS organisations that don’t have the internal expertise required. The Analysis Managed Service (AMS) offers access to a team of specialist, highly-skilled analysts but with a single point of contact to manage all analytical requests and prioritise them accordingly. This dedicated point of contact can draw on the combined expertise of the whole team and allocate work to the analysts with the most relevant experience and knowledge. They also have access to leading academics and researchers based in the Dr Foster Unit at Imperial College.

The AMS offers organisations the equivalent of a full-time analyst, ensuring there will always be someone on hand to help and requests can be turned around as needed. It gives trusts, clinical commissioning groups, integrated care systems and commissioning support units the opportunity to make the most of the business intelligence tools at their disposal – whether these are Dr Foster’s or otherwise – as well as access to clinical benchmarking tools, which can highlight areas for growth and improvement.

As well as delivering a greater, more consistent level of data interpretation and analytical support, a close working relationship with the Dr Foster team means our analysts will build an in-depth understanding of organisational objectives and the part that data plays in meeting them. This knowledge is beneficial because it means analysts can home in on what is required and can work more efficiently to complete requests. Our analysts will also assist NHS staff in understanding analytical techniques used and what results mean, through regular on-site meetings and presentations, training sessions, reports and other documentation. The AMS is bespoke and can be scaled up or down in line with demand.

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust has been using a dedicated Dr Foster Business Insight Manager for several years now, with hugely positive results. We recently spoke with Ruth Holland, deputy chief information officer, to talk about the difference it has made to the trust. You can watch what Ruth had to say in the video below.

For more information on how our new Analysis Managed Service could benefit your organisation, get in touch here.