Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Available all semesters
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 9 Hours.
Seminars / Tutorials 6 Hours. Seminar.
Practical 3 Hours.
Seminars / Tutorials 7 Hours.


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment Topics Write a report on one of the folloing topics (1,500 Words maximum) 1. You have been asked to advise the NHS Executive on the appropriate content of in-house training programmes for new staff recruited to posts in NHS inofmrormation services. Assuming that the staff concerned already hold general qualifications in information work, but have never worked with health information, what topics should be included in their training? In your report, distinguish between knowledge and practical skills, and offer justifications for your suggestions. Your report will be assessed against the following criteria. a. Areas of knowledge required: 30% b. Areas of competencies and practical skills required: 30% c. Justifications offered for the knowledge/competencies advocated: 30% d. Presentation and citation: 10% 2. You are a health care management consultant contracted to work with the staff of a specialist oncology centre in producing an Information Management & Technology (IM&T) strategy for the centre. Produce a report indicating the place of national IM&T objectives in the strategy with some suggestiions for incorporating existing information systems. (Essential Web page: NHS Executive. Information for health: an information strategy for the modern NHS, 1998-2005. 1998. Available : http:/www.imt4nhs.exec.nhs/strategy/full/contents.htm) Your report will be assessed against the following criteria: a. Coverage of key objectives of the strategy: 20% b. Description of information system types: 20% c. Analysis of issues for local implementation of the strategy: 40% d. Indication of role for current primary care and Trust-based information systems: 20%  Report: Submission Date - Report topic 1 or report topic 2 - 15.00 Friday 10th May 2000 
Semester Assessment 1 Essay (1,500 words)  Essay:  60%
Semester Exam 40%

Learning Outcomes

At the end of the module you should be able to :

. describe the social, political and economic contexts which effect the provision and use of health information;
. indicate the information needs of health professsionals and the consumers of health services;
. specify the kinds of sources and services which health information units and libraries should provide.


The module explains those approaches and techniques needed so that the right information is made available to the right people at the right time. An information professional working in the health sector must first understand how health care provision works, because this will shape the inforamtion needs of those needing information. The information needs of doctors, nurses, health managers, patients and others must be understood so that appropraite databases and other services can be provided through a range of information and library services.

To accomplish these aims the syllabus covers:
The contexts of health information
political, economic and social issues ; structure of health care systems; the UK National Health Service

Information Needs
the needs of medical, nursing and health management groups; members of the public who seek consumer health inforamtion

Major inforamtion sources and services
databases of numeric and text information for management and clinical pruposes; medical records; issues related to the provision of information services in health organisations.


Health care is controversial because of a collision of medical and social factors: more people are living longer as medical knowledge is refined, the cost of medical technology rises faster than inflation, but there are fewer people in full time work whose taxes can pay the bills. The consequences is action by governments to control expenditure on health, principally by setting priorities to determine who most needs health care.

None of these attempts to spend available resources wisely can work without information. Health professionals need information to decide what the population's health needs are, which care procedures will have the best outcomes and at what cost. Patients and healthy members of the community need information to understand their own state of health, to sustain healthy lifestyles and to make informed choices about treatment options offered to them. It is the task of information professionals to create and operate information serives which support these information needs.


This module is at CQFW Level 6