Staff from across Forth Valley gathered at a recent event to hear about a wide range of technological developments which are improving the care of patients across Scotland and beyond.
Technology Enabled Care, previously referred to as Telehealth, covers a wide range of initiatives designed to help patients manage and monitor their own health, enable people to live safely at home and improve access to services and support. This includes equipment which allows patients to measure things like their blood pressure, blood glucose levels, lung function and weight, sensors and alarms which can be fitted to the body or installed in homes and telecommunication systems which allow patients to speak to health professionals remotely via video link ups.
A number of local developments in NHS Forth Valley were highlighted. These included the launch of the ‘Living it Up’ portal (www.livingitup.org.uk) – an online portal which aims to help people to improve their health and wellbeing by finding out more about local health services, community activities and volunteering opportunities.
Members of the e-Health team illustrated how a Clinical Portal is being used to make it easier for staff to access patient information and test results. The portal pulls in information from a wide range of electronic systems and allows staff to access this using a single username and password rather than having to log on to lots of different accounts.
Ann Alison, Telehealthcare Lead, helped organise the successful event and is instrumental in driving forward the telehealthcare agenda in NHS Forth Valley, working closely with local partners.
Staff heard about developments in NHS Lanarkshire where they have been trialing the use of new technology to help patients with heart failure monitor their condition using a range of devices as part of the wider United4Health programme. NHS Highland showcased how they are using video link ups to provide support to patients with mental illness living in remote areas. Alistair Hodgson from the Scottish Centre for Telehealth and Telecare gave an overview of work underway across Scotland and staff also heard about developments from as far afield as Sweden.
Jonathan Procter, Director of IM&T and ehealth lead, said: “The event was a great opportunity to bring staff together to hear about some of the recent developments locally, nationally and internationally as well as see first-hand how some of these technologies are already making a difference to patients and staff.”