The first telehealth pilot project based in an extra care scheme in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire has been deemed a success.
Six customers at Briar Croft, Orbit Heart of England’s first mixed tenure independent living with care scheme, took part with the aim of reducing doctors’ and hospital visits and improve the quality of life.
Telehealth allows vital health checks (such as blood pressure, weight and ECG readings) to be carried out and sent electronically to GPs without the need for patients to make an appointment or visit a clinic. People are taught to do the tests themselves using a small unit and the measurements are automatically sent to a monitoring centre via a telephone line.
The project was a partnership between Orbit Independent Living, Rother House Medical Centre, Docobo, Baywater Healthcare (formerly Air Products Homecare) and Choice Health Care Group Ltd.
Tom Ganner, Practice Manager at Rother House Medical Centre, said: “Instinctively, telehealth feels the right thing to be doing. But it is important to make sure that it fits in with the systems that we currently use to make it safe and reliable. There is no doubt that as technology improves, with patients and clinicians gaining more confidence in these systems, telehealth and telecare will play an increasing role in health care provision.”