This article originally appeared in The Times
The wall of a quiet back room at Maidstone Hospital has been taken over by ten giant televisions flashing brightly coloured graphs.
Between them, the screens display the status of all 712 beds at the NHS trust, including how many are empty (56) and the number occupied by Covid patients (four).
Two years ago these vital statistics would have been collected manually using pencils, rubbers and whiteboards. Now, the hospital leads the NHS in using technology to solve the health service’s fundamental challenge of how to provide care when there are not enough beds.