Whilst there is no current definition of what ‘communities of practice’ are, their intended purpose is to bring together workers and service users in a way that allows for constructive communication. They can be seen as ‘sharing centres’ where healthcare professionals and patients can have an open dialogue; sharing experiences, stories and ideas that can influence current practices and instigate the development of new ones.
Communities of practice put patients at the centre of conversations and are values driven, ensuring that everyone included in the community is focused on improving the health and care experience. These communities embrace digital technology and actively discuss its current and future role in enhancing the experience of patients and workers. Having these communities will allow for a wide range of opinions to be expressed and discussed, from patients to ground level workers to management.