Alongside key delivery drivers, Health Education England (HEE) has established the Digital, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotic Technologies in Education (DART-Ed) programme looking to build on the findings and the recommendations made in the 'Topol Review - Preparing the healthcare workforce to deliver the digital future'.

With the emergence of technologies described in the review, as well as the ongoing digital transformation we are seeing in the health system, it is important to understand the learning needs of our healthcare professional workforce in respect to digital healthcare technologies, inclusive of artificial intelligence, data driver and robotic technologies.

HEE commissioned the University of Manchester to understand the evidence and undertake further evidence gathering exercises through workshops and survey engagement to inform the development of the capability framework. Workshops were attended by:

  • healthcare professionals
  • industry innovators
  • educators
  • academics

The survey was completed by a variety of professionals, including:

  • academics
  • students
  • slinicians
  • allied health professionals
  • digital/IT professionals

The developed framework builds on previous digital literacy capabilities outlined by HEE and its domains include:

  • digital implementation
  • digital health for patients and the public
  • ethical, legal, and regulatory considerations
  • human factors
  • health data management
  • artificial intelligence

It is an interative framework which helps outline the capabilities for healthcare professionals at this point in time and will be further informed in the future by other horizon scanning exercises and productions from the DART-Ed programme.

This capability framework will allow individual learners to understand their needs in the digital healthcare technology space, across various workforce archetypes, of users, embedders, creators, drivers, and shapers. It will also give a foundation of capabilities which can be lifted and shifted or adapted to curricular and teachning for our healthcare professionals. In addition it will guide the collation and commission of appropriate, openly accessible, and freely available learning resources for baseline levels of learning, as well as the creation of specialist offers for those needing more advanced skills and hands on learning. This work will be built on by separate productions more specifically related to AI confidence in collaboration with the AI Lab at the NHS Transformation Directorate and Robotics in Surgery education in collaboration with the Royal College of Surgeons.

Key audience members for this report and the enclosed capabilities framework include:

  • Healthcare professionals
  • Our postgraduate educators
  • Higher education organisations and other education providers
  • Our professional membership bodies, and their regulators.

This is a key step in defining what learning is needed to drive digital transformation and develop the necessary skills for our staff and learners to work safely, effectively, and efficiently with emerging technologies. 

Page last reviewed: 14 February 2023
Next review due: 20 February 2024