Last reviewed 8 June 2021

NHSX has commissioned two related reviews regarding the use of digital technology and capabilities in the adult social care sector.

The first review is on the adoption and scalability of technology innovation in the adult social care sector and the second, conducted jointly with Skills for Care, looks at the digital capabilities of the adult social care workforce.

Ipsos MORI and the Institute of Public Care (IPC) at Oxford Brookes University were asked to conduct the reviews, which will help determine national policy priorities over the coming years and help to focus the adult social care sector on where to direct its efforts in relation to digital technology and skills in adult social care. 

NHSX, the joint unit of NHS England and the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), said there is a significant evidence gap around the digital capability of the social care workforce including current levels of digital skills, understanding of future need, and current provision and outcomes of training available. 

The research hopes to cover the evidence gaps and provide a more comprehensive body of evidence to help NHSX plan their future strategy.

Key themes covered in the scoping review are:

  • current use and effectiveness of digital technology in the sector

  • potential for digital technology in the sector

  • barriers to adopting digital technology by care providers

  • barriers to providing digital technology to the sector faced by technology suppliers.

Field research is taking place between April and June 2021 for both of the reviews.

This includes online surveys, telephone surveys, qualitative interviews, discussion groups and case studies with a range of people across England including care providers, technology suppliers, local authorities, care workers and personal assistants, people with care and support needs, and carers.

The results of the rapid evidence review are available here.

More information about the reviews is available at: