Technology and the Winter Plan

Technology and the Winter Plan

The Department of Health and Social Care has published its Winter Plan, which sets out the government’s ambitions and the challenges facing adult social care this winter.

In terms of technology, the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic mean that there has been a significant shift in social care to use digital tools to help us.

We’ve had to innovate and work together to ensure that we use digital tools to support us, such as online learning, helping residents stay connected to their loved ones, and keeping updated on the latest health information.


How you can get support

At Digital Social Care, we’ll continue to have plenty of information, advice and tools for all your digital needs. Over the winter months, there is also lots of support from the government and other organisations to help you:

  • enabling further roll-out of the NHSmail and Microsoft Teams for all care providers
  • offering discounted broadband deals, allowing care homes to improve their internet connection and access video consultations for residents and allow them to better connect to their loved ones
  • providing regularly updated support materials on the Digital Social Care website to help care providers to introduce new technologies
  • distributing tablet devices to care homes that are in greatest need, so that staff can access remote health and care consultations for the people in their care. This will also support residents to stay connected with their families and loved ones. Technical and user support will also be provided. We will update this page when further information is available.
  • accelerating the safe adoption of products that enable providers to access GP record information for people within their care, including the ability to reorder medications online on behalf of their residents
  • publishing a new version of the data security and protection toolkit (DSPT) for the care sector, with additional guidance and support to enable safe use of technology.


Actions for providers

In the winter plan, all care providers are asked to:

  • consider how technical or digital solutions may help to protect the people you support from COVID-19 and connect them to their loved ones
  • engage with the NHSX DSPT support offer and register with DSPT by 30 September 2020
  • alert the NHSX Information Governance team on if you need any advice.


Contact our helpline

If you have any questions about technology, our helpline is here to support you. Call us on 0208 133 3430 (Monday-Friday 9-5) or email for free support.

When we receive more information on any of the above, we will publicise it in our newsletter.

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