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P-156 Can a hospice embark on a journey of digital transformation during and after a pandemic? Yes
  1. Sophy Horner,
  2. Sue McGraw and
  3. Maddy Bass
  1. St John’s Hospice, Lancaster, UK


When you send over a hundred staff to work from home equipped with pens, paper notepads plus a handful of laptops, you know your technology and digital infrastructure is weak and could hamper your ability to respond effectively. It was time to seek support from the local health economy.

The aim of our Digital Transformation Programme is to maximise the momentum for change to support digital transformation that ‘builds back better’ by empowering staff, patients, their families, governance and health partners. The journey started by collaborating with external colleagues and procuring the services of an external consultant to ensure an ‘outside-in’ perspective. A migration to Office 365 was followed by purchasing laptops for community use e.g. clinical staff working in patients’ homes. Digital communications and fundraising were used to reach out to the community.

In practice Office 365 has seen staff engaging ‘face to face’ via ‘Teams’ and improved our cyber security processes. New technology is resulting in films e.g. to support care home staff, patients and recruitment, with one film receiving over 15,000 views. The experience of successful (at times frustrating) digital fundraising led the hospice to a new website and an investment in Donorflex to influence future income generation decisions.

Our topical journey also sees us using existing systems differently to streamline processes, clarify protocols and work more efficiently. Staff are open to change and more willing to voice their needs so current activities include plans for staff digital upskilling, collaboration with the local university, the imminent arrival of our Telephony System Replacement, delivery of podcasts and exploration of virtual consultations. The recruitment of a Digital Transformation Manager to help build prowess for a 21st century hospice supported by the recently formed Digital Transformation Working Group will facilitate our continuing journey and ensure all departments have ownership.

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