Event Resources – Telehealth Projects

This event took place at Durham County Cricket Club in Chester-Le-Street on Friday 11th September 2015. Please find below the speakers and presentations from the day:

Improving prenatal diagnosis and management in Cumbria by telemedicine

Vikki Snaith, The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Videoconference units in the obstetric ultrasound department in west Cumberland can transmit high quality realtime scan images to a fetal medicine consultant in Newcastle who can then give live guidance. This would save consultant time and patient travel costs and is a technology that could also be used to improve other medical services. The project started in July 2015. Cumbria sonography staff training has commenced, video links between the two departments have been established and good quality initial ultrasound images have been transmitted.

Innovation in Digital Care

Paul Keane OBE / Terry Bearpark, Teesside University

A good strategy for the implementation of digital technology in care across the region can only begin with a good working knowledge of what is already being done. This research aims to assess the range of digital care projects in all organisations across the region and their impact. Common barriers to the use of currently available digital technology have also been identified.

Cumbria Rural Health Forum

Alison Marshall, University of Cumbria

A network of professionals from private, public and voluntary organisations are assessing whether digital technology can help make good rural health and social care. Specific rural issues include: dispersed communities, smaller GP practices, more elderly populations, and limited broadband and mobile infrastructure. The forum commenced in April 2014 and has mapped 27 digital care projects currently in use across Cumbria (http://www.ruralhealthlink.co.uk/activities/). 3 themes of work have also been identified: Improving health outcomes, sharing information and good practice and developing a digital-ready health workforce.

Resource management / e-referrals with care homes and hospices across Cumbria

John Roebuck, Cumbria CCG

AHSN NENC have supported the implementation of the “Strata” e-Referrals and Resource Matching system to all health and social care providers across Cumbria. The software helps efficiently and safely transfer patients between care services and Cumbria CCG is the first commissioner to introduce it into the NHS. Cumbria services now receive 1300 e-Referrals per month. Lengths of hospital stays have been considerably reduced and at least £300,000 of staff time has been saved. The AHSN have extended support for the project until 2016.

“Child safeguarding forms in particular used to take about 2 hours to fill in – now that is reduced to about 10 minutes” John Roebuck

INR Testing in the community

Ian Briggs, County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust

INR is a measure of how long it takes for blood to clot and is needed to determine the effect of warfarin in a patient. 200 warfarin patients were given devices to test their own blood at home and test results were sent to clinic using a telephone system. The system was highly flexible around the patient and clinical staff were very supportive. Overall warfarin management by patients improved by 17%, adverse events were reduced by 50% and elective clinical visits were reduced from 18 per year to 1. Clinician time is used more effectively and the system costs just 16p per patient per day.

“A 16% improvement of warfarin patients nationally would equate to 1500 fewer Strokes per year”

“There is a waiting list to come on the INR system in County Durham and Darlington” Ian Briggs

The participation and health improvement of children and young people with Type 1 diabetes

Chloe Brown, Investing in Children

Complications from Type 1 Diabetes have a significant healthcare and welfare impact in young people. Improved self-management would reduce the number of hospital admissions due to diabetic complications. This project uses peer support groups and simple telehealth text messages to support and motivate young people to manage their own condition. AHSN funding has allowed the program to roll out across the region. Trusts and Universities across the country have also expressed interest. Project results are being evaluated by a research team at Newcastle University.

Evaluation of Health Call Undernutrition Service

Catherine McShane, County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust

Health Call Undernutrition is a new digital telephone service that monitors and supports undernourished patients. Over 400 patients have now been registered. Project results so far show that it has saved 180 unnecessary outpatient appointments and approximately £20,000 on inappropriate prescription of food supplements. Feedback from patients, clinicians and care homes is extremely positive and care homes would like to use the service pro-actively for all patients. AHSN funding really helped develop and deploy the service in the Durham and Darlington area and will now also extend the service to other areas.

“When you’re a carer you need support… even an automated voice”.

Evaluation of telehealth monitoring in pregnancy using a multimatrix, multipartner model

Kim Hinshaw, City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust

Gestational diabetes (GDM) and pregnancy induced hypertension (PIH) are conditions in pregnancy that represent a considerable burden on pre-natal clinics and yet can be monitored with very cheap and simple equipment. Pregnant mothers were given blood pressure cuffs or diabetic testing sticks and regularly tested themselves at home. Results were texted back to the clinic using the Florence telehealth system. AHSN funding enabled the system to be set up in 5 maternity units. Patient feedback was highly positive and Trusts saved up to 20% in staff time costs.

“It is certainly feasible and deliverable to use telehealth monitoring for PIH and GDM and ease stretched services” Kim Hinshaw

The Northern Test Bed bid submitted to NHS England

Oliver James, AHSN NENC 

Innovative Telehealth Programme

Paul Marriott, AHSN NENC Telehealth Programme Manager

Professor Paul Marriott gave an overview of the telehealth clinical pathways currently active across the North of England. He outlined the potential of the technology, the most frequent barriers that are encountered and the success of our own Florence telehealth projects both here and in the US. He emphasised that engaging clinicians is key and that the needs of the patients and clinicians should be matched with digital solutions. Over 700 Clinicians in the North East are currently engaged in telehealth.

“The North East is well ahead in telehealth innovation” Paul Marriott