Nice conference 2017: power is moving to the patient

Written on Monday 22nd May 2017

Angela Rylands, Patient Centred Outcome Consultant at pH Associates Ltd (An OPEN Health company) recently attended the NICE Conference 2017 in Liverpool, UK. Here Angela gives us her thoughts and key take-away message from the event.

The big bold message that struck me during the NICE 2017 conference in UK, Liverpool was "power is moving to the patient".  In the opening session, the conference tag line: "Innovation Access Transformation" flashed in front of the audience, setting the scene for the meeting sessions to follow.  NICE, true to form (as one of the first organisations to actively engage with patients) is setting standards for transforming healthcare delivery in the most patient-centred way possible.

"We need to 'harness' that power", we were told by NICE, who provided examples of how they are listening to patients, searching for innovative ways of incorporating the patient voice.  We heard about how patients are paving the way for transforming healthcare delivery.  At a recent Nesta Health Lab (May 2017) the ‘Future of People Powered Health’ event in central London, communities of patients came together, all with the aim of driving change in clinical research.  They report to have access to a pool of 83 million patients for observational studies; an invaluable resource that should be harnessed by NICE and others. Another excellent example of putting patients at the centre of healthcare, is the Greater Manchester NHS Trust. During the conference, the Trust showcased several case examples of how they are proactively involving patients in their service design. These models of patient-centricity offer working examples of how patients are taking charge of their own health care. 

More and more, patients are showing that they are willing to provide valuable data that can be used to transform the way that health care is delivered.  The economistlast month described data as the most valuable resource of our times.  Aligned with this, NICE reiterated the need to seize the opportunity to understand the patient-centred data available. The data that patients are providing makes healthcare deliverers accountable to the people they serve. It is the patient-centred data that provides information critical to describing treatment pathways. 

Choice is facing people in healthcare and providers need to become ever more focused. Actively involving people in their own health makes the voice of the patient an integral part of their treatment. The patient voice can be used to demand the benefits that science can bring to health, guide innovators, set the standards and enable patients to take an active role in research. While real time data becomes more and more important to research, patient communities can advocate for and demand more clinical research. 

It is evident that "power is moving to the patient" and it has been fantastic hearing about how NICE is not only embracing but innovating alongside this shift of power. 

For further details of pH Associates (an OPEN Health company) and its Patient Centred Outcomes (PCO) offering, please get in touch with Angela Rylands, Patient Centred Outcomes Consultant at pH Associates (an OPEN Health company) either via email: or 'phone: 01628 481 112