Transforming Systems has been working with West Kent CCG for over five years, helping improve its real-time data capabilities. In particular, we work with Head of Urgent and Emergency Care, David Robinson, who depends on reliable and timely information as he oversees and manages the provision of resourcing. 

The Challenge

NHS West Kent CCG is responsible for commissioning healthcare services across the West Kent region. Representing over 320 GPs and 498,000 residents, having reliable, up-to-date data vastly improves service and resource delivery. 

Many CCGs collect and assess the status and demands of their various Urgent and Emergency Care services by completing and compiling daily spreadsheets. These spreadsheets provide key information such as:

  • Ambulance waiting times,
  • 999 calls received,
  • Beds available in Emergency & Admissions.

When this information is added to the various tracking spreadsheets it is current. However, by the time it is received by people like David, it’s often already out of date, providing information about what was happening then, not what was happening now

‘I would need to have conversations, emails or telephone calls with each provider individually, or they would each be expected to send in a template. This meant I was receiving 10 or more templates, which I then had to collate. It took a long time.’

David Robinson

The Solution 

The introduction of SHREWD has provided staff like David with the information they need about the Urgent and Emergency Care service, on a platform that is easy to access, understand, interpret and respond to. 

‘First thing in the morning, I’ll have a look at the A&E performance on SHREWD. I’ll be looking at things like ambulance handovers and any issues that have been flagged on SHREWD. This gives me a good overview of our current position. I’ll check on SHREWD mid-morning and again in the afternoon.’

‘If I'm not at my desk or in a meeting, I can always access SHREWD on my laptop or mobile phone to have a quick look at flow and capacity – it’s great because it is real-time insights.’

David Robinson

SHREWD (and consequently the CCG) has transformed the way data is collected, interpreted and shared. Long gone are the days of completing spreadsheets by hand. Around 75–80% of the indicators monitored using SHREWD are now measured and updated automatically, with some updated every 15 minutes throughout the day.

It is this live information that has proven to be most useful in reducing the administrative burden, such as simplifying the daily winter reporting to NHS England and NHS Improvement, removing the need to liaise with 15–20 different organisations individually.

There has also been a significant narrowing of the indicators measured. Four years ago, hundreds of indicators were being recorded, but now only the ones that are most important to the CCG are monitored. Every provider within the CCG now has five or six key areas measured, making it much easier to assess things. Additional data is still recorded and available for people to analyse when more depth is required. 

'SHREWD provides me with a helicopter view of the whole West Kent system; what's going on, where potential issues could arise, what happened the previous day and what's happening now. By looking at SHREWD, I'm able to see any problems very quickly. It's efficient.’

David Robinson