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You know what the NHS really needs? Influencers, right guys? #blessed

Hey nurses, it's not like you've got anything else to do

The NHS is seeking nurses and health care professionals to become social media "influencers" to promote its app.

The NHS app went live in January and allows people to check their symptoms using NHS 111 online, book appointments and order repeat prescriptions if their surgery has signed up to it. It was developed with software company Kainos and cost £6.4m.

That is part of the NHS' long-term "digitisation strategy" with the intention that by 2020-21 people will have access to their own care plan and communications from care professionals via the NHS app.

And to get the ball rolling, it is looking for 10 "NHS ambassadors" (including nurses, midwives, allied health professionals and doctors) to promote its use.

Those "influencers" will apparently encourage downloads by talking about its benefits on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

England's chief nursing officer, Ruth May, said the NHS is looking for people from a range of different backgrounds.

"The best advert for our NHS is our extraordinary staff who continue to be the envy of the world, and with some of our leading lights soon to be promoting the next generation of health care tech across social media, the benefits of the NHS App will be experienced by even more people across England."

Tara Donnelly, chief digital officer at NHSX, said: "Just like you can book a flight or order food to your door, we want NHS services and advice to be available in the palm of your hand.

"The official NHS App has the potential to benefit millions of people and is an important step in driving forward digitalisation of the NHS."

However, the NHS has been accused of focusing too much on technology gimmicks, and not enough on other issues such as the shortage of doctors and nurses, the social care crisis, and escalating waiting times.

Last month UK health secretary Matt Hancock was accused of being "obsessed by technology" for its own sake following the UK government's vague announcement about injecting £250m into a AI laboratory for the NHS.

Hancock is also a big fan of applications, acting as an ambassador and influencer for his very own Matt Hancock app, which features such disconcerting pop-up messages as: "Allow Matt Hancock to access this device's location?". ®

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