Glossary of Terms

2FA – two-factor authentication

3G – 3rd generation

4G – 4th generation

5G – 5th generation

ACO – accountable care organisation

AI – artificial intelligence

Android – Google's mobile operating system (OS).

Antivirus – software designed to prevent, detect, and remove viruses and other malware.

App – application

Apple – makers of the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and the Mac range of personal computers (PCs).

AVR – Accredited Voluntary Registers

BAME – Black Asian and Minority Ethnic

Bandwidth – the amount of data you can send through a network or modem connection.

Blog – an online journal or discussion website.

Bluetooth – short-range, wireless technology allowing compatible devices to talk to each other.

BMA – British Medical Association

Broadband – high-speed data transmission in which a single cable can carry a large amount of data at once.

CC – Care Coordinator

CCG – clinical commissioning group

CD–ROM – Compact Disc Read-Only Memory

CD–RW – Compact Disc Re-Writable

CHC – community health council

CQC – Care Quality Commission

DH, DoH or DHSC – Department of Health and Social Care

DNS – Domain Name System

Download – the process in which data is sent to your computer.

DPA – Data Protection Act

DVD – Digital Versatile Disc

E&D – equality and diversity

eBook – electronic book

EDI – equality, diversity and inclusion

EHR – electronic health record

Email – messages distributed electronically from one computer user to one or more recipients via a network.

EPR – electronic patient record

EPS – electronic prescription service

Facetime – a video calling app for Apple mobile devices.

FB – Facebook

FT – foundation trust

GB – gigabyte

GDC – General Dental Council

GHz – gigahertz

Gmail – Google Mail

GMC – General Medical Council

GP – general practitioner

GPSI or GPwSI – general practitioner with a special interest

HA – health authority

HCA – health care assistant

HCHS – hospital and community health services

HCSW – Healthcare Support Worker

HDD – hard disk drive

HSCDS – Health and Social Care Digital Service

HWE – Healthwatch England

IC – information commissioner

ICO – Information Commissioner's Office

ICP – integrated care pathway

ICT – information and communication technology

IDCR – integrated digital care record

Internet – a global network of countless smaller networks and computers, allowing billions of

people to share information. The World Wide Web (www) and email are two of the internet’s many features.

iOS – Apple’s mobile operating system

IP – internet protocol

ISP – internet service provider

IT – information technology

Kbit – kilobit

Kbps – kilobits per second

KHz – kilohertz

LA – local authority

LGA – Local Government Association

LHA – Local Health Authority

LINk – local involvement network

Logging in – the process of entering your login details.

Login – the details (username and password) used to authenticate your identity.

Malware – software designed to disrupt, damage, or gain unauthorised access to a computer system.

Mb – megabit

MB – megabyte

MDT – multi-disciplinary team

MHz – megahertz

Modem – a box that connects your home network to the internet

NCVO – National Council for Voluntary Organisations

NHS – National Health Service

NHSD – NHS Digital

NHSE – NHS England

NHST – NHS trust

ONS – Office for National Statistics

OOH – out of hours

OP – outpatient

OS – operating system

OTC – over-the-counter

PAG – Patient Advisory Group

Password – a string of characters used for authenticating a user on a computer system.

PC – personal computer

PCT – primary care trust

PDF – Portable Document Format

PHE – Public Health England

Phishing – the practice of sending spoof emails to trick you into revealing personal information, like passwords and credit card numbers.

PHR – Personal Health Records

PIN – personal identification number

PKB – Patients Know Best

PPE – patient and public engagement

PPG – patient participation group

Q&A – questions and answers

QA – quality assurance

QR Code – Quick Response Code

Router – a box that lets your devices talk to each other and connect to the internet via a modem.

RSS – Really Simple Syndication

SAR – subject access request

SCR – summary care record

SD – Secure Digital e.g., ‘SD card’

SIM card – Subscriber Identity Module card

SPAM – unsolicited, or junk, email.

SPF – Social Partnership Forum

SPN – special patient notes

SSD – solid-state drive

Teams – a Microsoft app for making video calls, among other things.

TEG – trust executive group

TTS – text-to-speech

Upload – the process of sending data from your device or computer to another system.

URL – Uniform Resource Locator i.e., the address of a web page or other resource on the


USB – Universal Serial Bus. USB is the most common type of physical computer connection.

Username – a name that uniquely identifies someone on a computer.

VCS – voluntary and community sector

VFM – value for money

Virus (computer) – a self-replicating program capable of corrupting a system or destroying data.

VPN – virtual private network

WAP – Wireless Application Protocol 

Web browser – often just called a 'browser', these programs allow you to access the World

Wide Web e.g., Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Safari.

Webmail – an email service that can be used in a web browser.

Website – a collection of web pages and other content published under a common domain name.

WEP – Wired Equivalent Privacy

WGA – Windows Genuine Advantage

WhatsApp – a messaging app that lets you send text messages and make voice and video calls.

Wi-Fi – a wireless networking standard. Wi-Fi allows computers and other devices to

connect through wireless routers to other systems on the internet. 

Window – and area on a screen that displays information for a specific program.

Windows – personal computer (PC) operating systems (OS) developed by Microsoft.

World Wide Web – often simply called ‘the web’. The web consists of pages that can be accessed using a web browser. ‘The web’ isn’t the same as ‘the internet’.  It’s one of the many features of the internet.

www – stands for World Wide Web.

YouTube – a video sharing website owned by Google.

Zip – A zip file (.zip) is a 'zipped' or compressed file.

Zoom – Zoom is a video conferencing app that lets you meet virtually with others.

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