SBP Digital to make apps for NHS

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A DIGITAL design agency based in Edinburgh has developed technology that could transform the way patients are treated by the NHS.

SBP Digital is working with health boards across Scotland, which are using its software apps and tools to gather and analyse patient feedback.

The firm had developed an app for Apple’s iPad tablet that can capture so-called “digital stories” in text, audio or video format. Questionnaires can be created easily with respondents left alone to answer in their own time, minimising the external influences that a traditional interviewer might bring.

The introduction of the technology follows the creation of a national patient experience programme, through the public body Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS). It aims to improve areas such as hospital admission and checkout procedures, facilities and staff treatment.

Two additional bits of software have been developed by SBP, allowing paper-based spreadsheets to be replaced by an online tool, while a system that enables children to express themselves through drawings has been launched.

The “miituu” app has been taken up by frontline staff at Yorkhill Children’s Hospital in Glasgow.

SBP director Mark Magnante said: “We are delighted to be working with numerous NHS regions in Scotland in this critically important area.

“We have been developing apps, websites and other tools specifically to make the gathering and analysis of feedback as simple yet powerful as ­possible.”

Richard McLennan of HIS, who has been overseeing the initiative, said a way of ­capturing the voice of the patient had been found that went “far beyond” traditional methods.