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Remote monitoring service to be expanded in Norfolk following success


Norfolk Community Health and Care it is using a remote monitoring service from Inhealthcare which allows patients to monitor their vital signs at home and relay readings via a choice of communication channels to clinicians who monitor trends and intervene if readings provide any cause for concern.

Analysis of the six months before and after introduction showed a significant reduction in hospital bed days, A&E attendances, GP visits and out-of-hours appointments.

Lead heart failure nurse at the trust, Rhona Macpherson, spoke to Digital Health News about the impact of the services on patients and nurses. For Macpherson, the service has helped promote self-management.

“We give each of the patients a set of scales, blood pressure monitor and pulse oximeter and we get them to do their observations,” she said.

“So we’re promoting self-management and looking at things but also it means that we can get accurate information on what’s happening with their observations.

“We then set parameters to alert if they go outside of the parameters, and it just means we can intervene much more quickly than we would do, and we can see what’s going on between our visits as well as what’s happening when we’re actually there.”

The service has transformed working practices for nurses, increasing efficiency and saving valuable time.

Macpherson said: “We’re using the technology to try and make ourselves a little bit more efficient, so it’s saving on the travel time and face to face visits.

“We can do a lot more with telephone. We’ve got the option of using video, but telephone is actually quite useful. So it’s less face to face visits, less travel and also, we’re trying to empower the patients to do their own observations and monitor themselves, rather than us just doing it for them.”

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