Entirely Predictable Outcome
Some years ago I considered releasing an application for use by clinicians in Britain. I have developed a number of health systems in the past, both at the national level and at the (large) hospital level. But none of this prior experience was in Britain.
Having ascertained that there was both need and demand for the application, it was still prudent to check what was going wrong with Information Systems in the NHS, before spending any real money.
In a nutshell what I found was that several key projects were in process, but the working parties were predominantly staffed by all the doctors, nurses, surgeons, pharmacists, librarians, administrators, midwives, academics (you get the idea, this list could fill several pages), who were so terminally useless that their involvement in an IS project would have no impact on current healthcare operations.
The respective project managers were of the passive process variety, going through the motions and not differentiating between those notions which were batsh1t eatingly stupid, complex and off the wall. and the needed sensible, useful and simple applications that could be augmented in the future. At no stage were the participants shepherded back to the real world.
So a an application to handle prescriptions became a medical order system (sensible), and then somehow metamorphosed into a knowledge based best practices behemoth, which would never, ever work, for very obvious reasons. When it came to prescribing drugs, the processes described were more involved than those involved in getting approval for the drugs in the first place. But somehow there was no alert system considered to pick up on potential prescription drug interactions.........
All the other systems I examined were equalling discouraging. The health record system was designed to "leak", and appeared to have been sketched out by a group with a background in .public safety and a taste for data matching.
I actually attended a "summit" that was discussing health systems in the NHS, and was horrified when in a general session, the response to my tongue in cheek remark "a billion pounds isn't what it used to be", was a great deal of sage head nodding from all on the platform.
As I contemplated the differences between what was, and continues to occur in Britain with what I had experienced elsewhere, I decided not to continue the project. Had it been developed, it would also have handled the current failing referrals project.
I know I am not alone in fleeing abroad when presented with the need to see a doctor for anything more serious than a signature on a piece of paper.