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  • Run by Surrey County Council, working with the Surrey Heartlands Integrated Care System and The Information Lab.
  • Aimed to improve how data can inform decision making about the integration of services and changes to clinical pathways.
  • Developed a ‘community of practice’ in which analysts are trained and work together to generate better intelligence and sophisticated data visualisations in collaboration with decision makers.
  • Delivered between January 2018 and March 2019.

Surrey Heartlands is an Integrated Care System (ICS) partnership of health and care organisations that work together with staff, patients, carers, families and members of the public to transform local services and support people to live healthier lives.

This project set out to make best use of data held in different parts of the ICS by developing a strong analytic community of practice in which analysts are trained and work together to generate better intelligence and sophisticated data visualisations to inform decision making and drive population health management.

Analysts recruited from Surrey County Council, local clinical commissioning groups and Academic Health Science Networks received training to raise their data visualisation skills to a common standard, collaborating via an online platform to share tips and techniques.

Next, they worked intensively alongside decision makers from across the ICS in three innovative ‘hackathons’ – day-long events to allow co-design of data visualisations providing insights into transforming care using currently available data on cardiovascular disease prevention, primary care networks, and children’s health and wellbeing. 

These visualisations helped decision makers with important considerations on the design, commissioning and delivery of care, such as piloting a new blood pressure service in pharmacies and data reporting on early warning signs for low-birthweight babies.

Project evaluation through surveys, interviews and focus groups revealed that analysts improved their teamworking and data visualisation skills, which need to be deployed quickly and regularly to be maintained. Decision makers leant how formulate more precise, useful questions and use visualisations to prioritise actions.

Getting analysts and decision makers together proved to be a powerful approach to support change, which continues to be applied though Surrey Office of Data Analytics – a new virtual hub combining business intelligence and data analytics capabilities across the ICS.

Contact information

For more information about this project, please contact Julie George, Consultant in Public Health, Surrey County Council.

About this programme

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