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Managing knowledge to support the patient journey in NHS Scotland: strategic vision and practical reality

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Background:  The strategy for NHS Scotland Knowledge Services is set in the context of a global transition to a networked model of management within health services.

Objectives:  Development planning for NHS Scotland aims to establish strategic vision and operational delivery systems which meet the needs of this changing health environment.

Methods:  Analysis of knowledge needs at strategic organizational level and through consultation with healthcare staff form the basis of a vision of seamless knowledge support throughout all stages of the patient journey, based on a hybrid model of complementary human‐ and technology‐based knowledge networks.

Results:  The central role of the NHS Scotland e‐library as a system‐wide technology infrastructure facilitating management of both explicit and tacit knowledge is described. The implementation pathway and approaches to evaluation are outlined, based on practical steps to translate the concept of knowledge networks into a working reality.

Conclusions:  The model emerging is that of a knowledge matrix, with the primary delivery system comprising inter‐dependent human, organizational and technology‐based networks focused on the overriding common purpose of improving patient care.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: NHS Scotland Library Service Development Coordinator, Knowledge Service Group, NHS Education for Scotland, Glasgow, UK

Publication date: June 1, 2005

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