COVID-19 special report: NHS turns to video conferencing solutions
Building Better Healthcare has released a COVID-19 special report, interviewing Intouch with Health’s CEO in the report.
Building Better Healthcare (BBH) explores how coronavirus has forced the NHS to move away from face-to-face contact, leading to an upsurge in hospital Trusts using remote / video conferencing solutions. Telephone and video conferencing solutions are now being utilised extensively across the NHS. Virtual consultations link patients and medical professionals, enabling consultations to continue safely within social distancing considerations.
Click here to read the full report: COVID-19 Special report: NHS turns to remote phone and video conferencing solutions.
Interview with Mike Sanders
Speaking to BBH this week, Chief Executive Officer, Mike Sanders, said that Intouch with Health was now leading on the use of virtual consultations, but with a difference as the software is designed to integrate fully with the existing hospital systems (PAS / EPR) as well as the Intouch Platform.
He explains: “The problem is how do we marry up the patient and the doctor and collate the relevant data from these remote consultations and put that into the necessary systems. That’s the challenge hospitals and other providers will face next.”
Intouch with Health enables healthcare operators to link video conferencing technology with patient records securely.
A fresh approach
He adds: “Imagine you have a patient who has had a standard outpatient appointment in their diary for several months and they cannot now attend the hospital because of the restrictions caused by coronavirus.
“The first problem is the hospital is going to have to create that remote appointment and invite the patient to attend, and there’s often no vehicle in place to do this easily.
“Let’s imagine they get around that and the patient gets a message. They will log in on the specific day and wait for the appointment, but they do not know if the clinic is running late or the doctor is off sick. There is no one managing the appointment and no way of knowing the patient is the right person.
“Next, they might eventually speak to the doctor, but how do they record what they need to do next and make sure it is actioned?
“When a doctor physically sees a patient, they have access to a number of systems, which they might not have when working remotely.
“Using our virtual systems, we are proposing a fresh approach to this growing method of communication.”
Benefits of Intouch with Health’s Virtual Clinics solution includes super-quick deployment and scalability.
Healthcare efficiency benefits – including integration
But also key are patient authentication, integration into most existing PAS systems, and a virtual waiting room, signalling to the patient any information on the appointment.
And, once any decision has been taken, the platform records this and can incorporate it into whatever host system the organisation is using.
Most importantly is choosing a supplier which has commitment and evidence that they can integrate into your electronic patient record or patient administration system, as well as supporting the virtual consultation solution each individual trust has chosen.
Sanders said: “We understand that resources are being stretched by the outbreak of COVID-19 and deploying a new solution in the current environment will be challenging.
“As a result, we have designed Virtual Clinics to be deployed in streamlined phases, in order to enable a swift realisation of some key benefits, while maintaining a realistic approach to the practicalities of the current circumstances.”
Advising trusts looking to implement video conferencing, he said: “Most importantly is choosing a supplier which has commitment and evidence that they can integrate into your electronic patient record or patient administration system, as well as supporting the virtual consultation solution each individual trust has chosen.
An eco-system of collaboration
“Intouch has developed an eco-system of collaboration with Visonable, Healthcare Communications, Modality Systems, and Dr Doctor and will soon be working with Attend Anywhere, so can support a wide range of applications.”