Skip to main content

Health conversations - our blogs, columns and tweets in one place

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Content

I'm quite pleased with this: Health conversations. It's a simple thing - a different way of presenting content that already appears somewhere else on

Screenshot from Health conversations

We're using it as the DH version of a blogs homepage. We're pulling content from a few different sources - basically anything we regularly publish on that's personally attributed: blogs and columns, and tweets from our personal-official Twitter channels.

All the page does is aggregate a collection of RSS feeds, and present them in chronological order in a grid. It's the bonus bit of some work that Steph and Francis have been doing to enhance the way we present DH content.

I'm not really sure whether there's a demand for this from our users - it might not have featured that high up the list in a DH need-o-tron, and it's not solving a pressing policy problem.

The reason I like it is that it represents a few of the things we've been trying to do differently with digital communication in the Department of Health in the last year. Personally attributed digital content has had a central role in most of our work, so it feels good to see interesting articles pushing each other down the page like a game of health policy Tetris.

And it works because of the changes we've made to the way we publish our content, with every tag, category, blog and sub-site generating RSS feeds to make this kind of easy syndication and cross-promotion possible.

The other reason I like it is that I can imagine us putting it - or something like it - to work for other purposes.  With a couple of tweeks to the settings, we could use something like this to curate content around a policy theme - from external sources as well as internal - as part of a policy engagement campaign.

And it looks quite nice.

Sharing and comments

Share this page


  1. Comment by Daniel Crosariol posted on

    I think it's great - accessible, succinct and easy - well done!

  2. Comment by Helena Reeves posted on

    Hi Stephen,
    Agree witih Daniel's post and good to see DH in the digital sphere!

    There was an NHS Digital Communications Review dated June 2010; any update on recommendations available?

    • Replies to Helena Reeves>

      Comment by Stephen Hale posted on

      That was before I arrived but if it's the same one I'm thinking of, I don't think any recommendations were published. It will all feed into our Information Strategy though - I hope to be able to post more about that soon.