North Lincolnshire patients set to benefit from digital healthcare review

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North Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group has reviewed the way it currently uses technology to help some people with long term health problems to monitor their own condition at home.

The review has coincided with the call from Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, NHS England’s National Medical Director, for CCGs to support the Technology Enabled Care Services (TECS) programme that will take the NHS into a new and exciting technological era that will help empower patients and improve health outcomes.

The CCG is keen to evaluate digital services across all sectors of health and care and to move towards the use of more effective, evidence-based systems.

The current Telehealth system will be phased out in November when the existing contract with the service provider ends.

The system has proved useful to a small number of patients but uptake has been low due to the already high support mechanisms in place for this patient group. Research has also indicated that the system brings limited health management benefits and that other emerging technologies have the potential to provide similar support more effectively.

The 24 patients directly affected by this initial change have all been contacted and will continue to be supported by their dedicated community matron.

The community team are working closely with them and their families to maintain the same high standard of care and to provide advice on self-management of their conditions.

Dr Nick Stewart, the CCG’s Clinical Lead for Long Term Conditions explains why the review will benefit patients: ‘Our patients consistently tell us how important it is to them to remain independent and in control of their own healthcare. By harnessing the power of digital technology we can empower people to manage their own care in a way that is right for them that also delivers value for money. Our ambition as a CCG is to support the innovative use of technology to improve health outcomes, empower patients, and deliver more cost-effective services as part of a modern model of integrated care.’