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Found 21 results
  1. Content Article
    I had been trying to get my Mom to do video calls on her computer for a decade. Pushback and inexperience with new technologies just didn’t give her the confidence she needed to step over that line. A lack of trust in the systems to work right and in her ability to navigate the hiccups minimised her willingness to give it a shot. And then along came covid. Due to necessity and front-line assistance (my sister and niece get a hat tip here), Mom finally began to see how beneficial the tools were for improving her state of mind and increasing our awareness of how she is from a long distance during the lockdown. There also has been hesitancy in healthcare to fully embrace communication technologies that can optimise and energise processes. Uncertainty and optimism are certainly warranted in the use of electronic mobile connections in healthcare and the devices that support it. These new approaches touch facets of training, appointments, personal health monitoring and overall system reliability. Beyond the changes necessitated by the pandemic, the need to embrace new technologies in healthcare is now essential and will be for the future despite expected challenges to universal adoption. The covid pandemic has motivated healthcare to broaden its vision of the potential for remote technologies. Now telemedicine, telehealth, telecoaching, digital therapeutics and mobile patient outreach has become absolutely necessary. They are here to stay. Changes in reimbursement policies have provided coverage for telehealth services that, before the pandemic, was much more restrictive. While patients and physicians may appreciate the convenience of this “new normal”, there are quandaries associated with its uptake. At a time when relationships are so vital to our lives, having technology to either build them (granted in a new way), inform them (via a new set of communication tools) or damage them (dependent on the willingness, system robustness and comfort of the individuals involved) is worth considering. For example, worries about diagnostic accuracy, limitations of the virtual physical exam, concerns about privacy, usability and the loss of the person-focus of patient/physician communication. The effectiveness of telemedicine and telehealth is also impacted by health literacy, access to reliable networks and patient comfort with using digital tools. Physicians and care organisations have to be creative and rely on partnerships and local resources, such as school district hot spots or public library broadband access, to make the system reliably work for all their patients. On another level, Dissent Magazine discusses a range of economic concerns stemming from the accelerated adoption of telehealth, including the primary worry that services have the potential to be structured as profit centres shifting the focus of decisions toward stakeholder and executive compensation rather than effective care. Then there are questions surrounding the apps and tools patients are using to make decisions about their health. Dr. Google has known weaknesses. Patient-facing diagnostic apps, wearables and symptom trackers, while showing promise still require appropriate risk evaluation before patients should fully trust them to track and manage their health without clinician guidance, and protect against worry and overuse of health services. The Skeptical Cardiologist shares reasons to resist the temptation to rely on, for example, the blood oxygen monitoring accuracy of a much anticipated product for reasons that include lack of reference to primary data and cost. Use of symptom trackers could proliferate as patients remain hesitant to visit physicians due to covid concerns. One project from Georgetown University was forthcoming about its rapid development strategy when sharing the results of a covid symptom tracker pilot test. Areas covered included size of the beta test (48 students), use of unique identifiers to address privacy concerns for both patients and organisations involved, access to condition-relevant patient-centered educational information and instructions to seek medical care should symptoms indicate that necessary step. It is this sort of transparency that aids the healthcare community and patients to appropriately select and trust tools to manage symptoms and situations for public and personal health safety. Voice activation technologies, so convenient for getting the latest news and listening to music, are seen as having great potential in healthcare monitoring as well. Voice characteristics are being explored as a diagnostic indicator. As covered recently in Nature, vocal biomarkers can track mental status, pulmonary function and coronary distress. But a myriad of factors could affect verbal characteristics reducing voice as a reliable mechanism for diagnosis. While promising, teasing out these differences in vocal diagnostics is still an emerging opportunity being explored in the US and around the world. Also, the use of voice-activated technologies in certain care settings can impact the privacy of the patient and may therefore not be suitable. On a systemic scale, the growing dependance on technologies leave patients, clinicians and organisations vulnerable to purposeful or accidental incidents or outtages, such as cyberattacks, that create disruptions and compromise patient safety. Recently a large health system in the US was crippled due to a ransomware attack. Patients needed to be rapidly moved to another out of system facility to ensure their safety. Experts caution that this is not the last of these situations and advise systems to train their staff and create awareness to recognise the early signals of a cyberattack to quickly reduce the extent of the damage and corresponding interruptions to healthcare services. Mom is now expanding her use of technology to make life better. She is exploring her first streaming service and becoming comfortable with its capabilities to binge on popular programmes. Who knows if that will lead the way to virtual visits with her cardiologist, or being able to track her vital signs from across the country and her personal use of a smart watch to monitor her heart? Let’s hope for all moms and other patients the adoption of technologies in the health space can be folded into our daily lives with minimal harm and negative disruption.
  2. News Article
    Patients who saw a pain medicine specialist via telemedicine saved time and money and were highly satisfied with their experience, even before the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study presented at the ANESTHESIOLOGY® 2020 annual meeting. Results of the study confirm many chronic pain patients are confident they will receive good care via telemedicine, while avoiding lengthy commutes and time spent in traffic. "This era of contactless interactions and social distancing has really accelerated the adoption of telemedicine, but even before the pandemic, patient satisfaction was consistently high," said Laleh Jalilian, M.D., lead author of the study and clinical assistant professor at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). "Patients who are being evaluated for new conditions may be better off having office visits initially. But once patients establish a relationship with providers, follow-up visits can occur efficiently with telemedicine, while maintaining patient rapport and quality outcomes. We believe 50% of our visits could be conducted via telemedicine." "Now that telemedicine is more widespread, it may become a valued part of care delivery in chronic pain practices," said Dr. Jalilian. "Clearly many patients benefitted from remote consultations and follow-up appointments using telemedicine. We hope it will encourage policymakers and insurance providers to continue to support these platforms and inspire more innovation in this developing field of research and patient care." Read full story Source: EurekAlert, 5 October 2020
  3. News Article
    Omnicell UK & Ireland, a leading provider of automated healthcare and medication adherence solutions, hosted a health summit on the eve of World Patient Safety Day, to discuss the impact of medication errors on patients and the NHS. The session focussed on the role technology can play in preventing such issues. The summit, this year held via webinar, comes off the backdrop of the Department of Health and Social Care disclosing that in England 237 million mistakes occur every year at some point in the medication process. These errors cause serious issues for patient safety, but also place a significant cost burden on an already stretched NHS. The 2019 Patient Safety Strategy published by NHS England and NHS Improvement also found the NHS failed to save 11,000 lives a year due to safety concerns with the cost of extra treatment needed following incidents being over £1bn. A number of high-profile panel members answered a series of questions from the audience on solutions and best practice to improve patient safety with the aim of debating and sharing ideas on how to meet challenges and the impact of COVID-19. One of the panelists, Patient Safety Learning's Chief Digital Office Clive Flashman, agreed with the other panel members that the NHS had become more collaborative and familiar with technology since Covid: “We’ve seen a definite increase in telehealth and telemeds. Covid has forced cultural blockers that were there before to be removed out of necessity. There has been a growth in robotic pharmacy automation to free up staff time from high volume administration tasks to do more complex work that adds value for patients.” But with the second-wave of COVID-19 still a very real threat he advised: “We don’t want to wait until the next wave to learn a lesson – we need to learn lessons now. Quality Improvement Leads should be focussed on what went right and what went wrong over that period between March and May. They need to be looking at what we can learn from that now and what we can do differently next time. If we don’t do that, we won’t succeed in the second wave where we might fail.” Ed Platt, Automation Director, Omnicell UK & Ireland, added: “Challenges within the NHS throughout Covid has forced them to embrace technology and drive innovation." "It’s important that when things go back to normal, we don’t go back to the same status quo. We need to invest in the right infrastructure in hospitals so unnecessary demands and stress are not put on pharmacy, supply managers and nurses so they are free to focus on patient care not administration tasks." Read full story Source: NHE, 17 September 2020 You can watch the webinar on demand here
  4. Event
    This webinar will explore virtual care and the use of patient health data through remote patient monitoring. In the UK and US alike, COVID-19 has accelerated the dramatic shift towards utilising digital health services and tools to virtually connect with and care for patients. Remote patient monitoring (RPM) offers providers the opportunity to remotely collect and utilise patients’ personal health data, such as data from their home-use medical devices and wearables, within care delivery efforts. These personal health data are providing deeper insight into patients’ physiologic health metrics, lifestyle decisions and behavioural trends while replacing the clinical data previously collected in-person. As health care organisations need to quickly scale virtual care to thousands of patients, clear best practices and lessons learned have emerged. This episode will deep-dive into the successful operations of the largest, centralised RPM programme, supporting over 3000 clinicians and more than 50,000 enrolled patients. We’ll delve into the most basic and complex challenges around patient-generated health data, patient consent, enrollment workflows, device logistics, patient and provider engagement, and more. This webinar will explore: Core operations and technologies to a holistic virtual care strategy The clinical outcomes, patient and provider satisfaction, and efficiencies created with RPM Best practices in digital health operations, data integration, analytics, and engagement A model and framework for scaling virtual care and RPM to thousands of patients quickly A CPD certificate with 1 CPD credit will be issued to those joining the webinar live as well as those who watch the recording afterwards. Certificates will be issued 7 days after the webinar to those who watch it live and after 30 days for those that watch the recording. Join in the conversation online using #RSMDigiHealthBook hereFollow us on Twitter: @RoySocMed Book here
  5. News Article
    All GP appointments should be done remotely by default unless a patient needs to be seen in person, Matt Hancock has said, prompting doctors to warn of the risk of abandoning face-to-face consultations. In a speech setting out lessons for the NHS and care sector from the coronavirus pandemic, the health secretary claimed that while some errors were made, “so many things went right” in the response to Covid-19, and new ways of working should continue. He said it was patronising to claim that older patients were not able to handle technology. The plan for web-based GP appointments is set to become formal policy, and follows guidance already sent to GPs on having more online consultations. But the Royal College of GPs (RCGP) hit back, saying it would oppose a predominantly online system on the grounds that both doctors and patients benefited from proper contact. Read full article here
  6. News Article
    Babylon Health is investigating whether NHS patients were among those affected by a 'software error' that allowed people registered with its private GP service to view recordings of other people's consultations earlier this month. Babylon Health has confirmed that a small number of patients were able to view recordings of other patients' consultations earlier this week. The issue came to light after a patient in Leeds who had access to the Babylon app through a private health insurance plan with Bupa reported that he had been able to view around 50 consultations that were not his own. The patient told the BBC he was 'shocked' to discover the data breach. "You don't expect to see anything like that when you're using a trusted app," he said. "It's shocking to see such a monumental error has been made." Babylon told GPonline that the app used by private and NHS patients is the same, but it had yet to confirm whether the roughly 80,000 patients registered with the company's digital first NHS service GP at Hand were among those affected. The problem is understood to have cropped up when a new feature was introduced for patients who switched from audio to video mid-way through a consultation. Read full story Source: GPOnline, 10 June 2020
  7. Content Article
    This webinar will be of interest to: anyone currently working in a nursing/allied health professionals (AHP) clinical informatics role those who aspire to develop their career in this area those who are seeking to set up such a role within their organisation those currently working with CNIOs/AHP informatics leads. Attendees will learn: more about how CNIO/AHP informatics roles are currently set up in the NHS – time commitment, reporting structures etc what the profile is of those holding such roles about possible challenges in connections between CNIOs/AHPs in informatics roles and CCIOs and CIOs thoughts on whether the CNIO/AHP informatics role should be formally recognised further views from senior leaders on the future of these roles.
  8. Content Article
    Editor in chief, Nicholas Thompson, hosted a Facebook Live with ER doctor turned co-founder Caesar Djavaherian, who now serves as the chief medical officer of his telehealth company, Carbon Health. This was the first in a series of four conversations presented by Salesforce in which WIRED will explore what the coronavirus pandemic means for the future of business, education, technology, and health.
  9. Content Article
    This article is aimed at doctors who are practising with telemedicine and would need to understand the guidance and regulation.
  10. Content Article
    What will I learn? What is telehealth? How could telehealth help me? What is telecare? How could telecare help me? How to get telecare products and services What do I need to consider when buying telecare products? What should I do next?
  11. Content Article
    Presentation by Nurse Consultant Rachel Binks, Digital & Acute Care Airedale NHS Foundation Trust. Includes a video insight into the telemedicine service in Airedale and their Gold Line Service.
  12. Content Article
    This information is for all healthcare professionals with prescribing responsibilities. It sets out the shared high level principles of good practice expected of everyone when consulting and or prescribing remotely from the patient. The principles are underpinned by existing standards and guidance from professional and system regulators. Healthcare professionals should continue to follow guidance from regulatory bodies and take clinical guidance into account in their decision making.