Published: 30 November 2022

Today, the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) has published a new report highlighting the vital role charities play in digital health. It shares case studies and outlines key learnings and recommendations from a collaborative project exploring how charity digital content can be better signposted.

The digital health project was delivered in partnership with NHS England, Diabetes UK, Asthma + Lung UK, Cystic Fibrosis Trust, Parkinson’s UK, Versus Arthritis, and MS Society, resulting in increased signposting to the charities’ information on national and NHS provider apps and digital platforms.

The report calls on NHS England to involve health charities in the development of health information on national digital channels like the NHS app, website and login, and to encourage providers to consider medical research charities as important stakeholders to involve.

Nicola Perrin, CEO of AMRC, said: "This is a great example of charities working collectively to accelerate benefits for patients. Charities do such fantastic work to provide online support to help patients to better manage their condition, including through digital services and the provision of health information.

 "I’m so pleased AMRC has been able to bring together charities who are at the forefront of this work, helping them to improve signposting to these services, and to work collaboratively with the NHS and digital health providers to maximise access."

Emma McLachlan, Director of Digital Experience at NHS England, said: “We welcome this report from the AMRC, which highlights the important role that charities play in health and social care. Patients are at the heart of everything we do, and we recognise the invaluable perspective that charities bring to our policies and programmes.

"During the past 12 months we’ve worked with the AMRC and their members to strengthen and refine how we signpost to charity content on the NHS website. We look forward to continuing to work with charities and patient groups as we develop digital tools and online resources for patients and carers across England.”