Joe Tibbetts is the CEO Boilerhouse Media Group and managing editor Healthcare Innovation Monitor. Joe has advised many government, NHS and commercial healthsector organisations on digital communications


Better collaboration on digital public services can provide a cost-effective lifeline

Tom Knight, Operations Director for Affinity Works, talks to Joe Tibbetts at the ADASS Care Apps Showcase in November. They discuss how working smarter and encouraging local authorities to standardise their digital operations can deliver essential savings and allow council employees to focus on what they do best.

Affinity Works was borne out of need to help local authorities, health and housing organisations collaborate and standardise online processes - particularly the legal requirements to make advice and information accessable to the public present in the Care Act. Tom suggests that large savings can be made by using technology as a cluster rather than a group of individuals.

Having already provided a successful support service for a group of councils in London, Affinity Works aims to satisfy the interest in implementing a standard model of a citizen portal across all councils. Individually, councils are currently spending around £70,000-£100,000 a year implementing and maintaining portals that are difficult and costly to maintain.

Tom suggests that the solution lies in collaboration. CarePlace, for example, is in use across 19 different London authorities all using the same technology. This reduces the cost of hosting, support and development and crucially frees up limited time and resources for council employees.

Working more efficiently and encouraging more local authorities to use the same technology supports transformation and collaboration across the whole of the country and, as a result of Affinity Works' presence at the ADASS Care Apps Showcase, Tom is confident that implementation across health, CCGs and housing - who all possess similar data requirements - will follow.

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