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NHS primary trusts turn to cloud for document sharing
A third of all primary care health trusts are turning to document sharing to improve collaboration
Cloud computing is being used to improve document handling across the NHS. A third of the NHS primary care trusts are currently active on the cloud-based service SkyDox, with potentially more using it in the future.
SkyDox, a service which enables file sharing, synchronisation, storage and collaboration, will allow NHS staff to collaborate on projects more effectively than the current legacy project management system. With SkyDox, the NHS Institute can ensure all team members have access to the latest version of a document.
Speaking with CloudPro, Nick Gaunt, chief information and knowledge officer of the NHS Institute, said that the ease of which NHS staff can collaborate with other hospitals and organisations around the country was a huge factor in using cloud-based services.
Gaunt told CloudPro that SkyDox was selected as it was the most cost-effective option and easiest to use for outside users. The ability to pay-per-user, rather than commit to a long-term contract, means that the cloud-based service is a more cost-effective option for the NHS. The NHS original had 20 users committed to the services, but that number has steadily increased with demand. The unique ability of the cloud to ‘pay-as-you-go’ means that administrators can allocate access to users as they need it, depending on the project.
In a statement, Gaunt said “Staff in the NHS are frequently called upon to work collaboratively, not only with people in their immediate organisation, but also with many NHS bodies at the national, regional and local level. This boundary spanning activity is increasing rapidly as the new localism agenda and other NHS reforms take hold.”
“Applications like SkyDox, which are easily deployed and accessible from anywhere, will make the required level of collaborative working possible in the years ahead. People take the path of least resistance and NHS staff has been voting with their feet when it comes to our legacy project management and collaborative technology solutions," he added.
One of the key elements that drove the use of SkyDox was the level of security. “Everyone just found it more straightforward to use email. This meant it was impossible to keep track of and control of the latest version of a document, as well as audit the dissemination of a document” Gaunt continued.
With SkyDox, the NHS Institute can ensure all team members have access to the latest version of a document. Speaking with CloudPro, Gaunt said that the ease of which NHS staff can collaborate with other hospitals and organisations around the country on projects was a huge factor in using the cloud-based service.