The Telehealth and Hospital In-reach Team consists of Telehealth Care Support Workers and Community Matrons, who work with patients diagnosed with a long term medical condition(s) to help them to monitor, manage and control their own health.
Long term conditions include high blood pressure, diabetes, breathing problems (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD) and heart problems that need to be managed carefully to avoid periods of illness and unnecessary hospital visits and admissions.Telehealth simply means providing health care at a distance rather than face to face. In Newham, we are leading the way in using telehealth technology to support people to help manage their condition, maintain their health and well-being and live independently.
Why we use Telehealth
Our Telehealth services aim to do three things:
- Support people in understanding their long term condition and acquiring the skills and habits of self management needed to achieve the best outcomes in terms of their health.
- Reduce avoidable hospital admissions and inappropriate A&E visits through improving the information available to patients, carers and clinical staff.
- Minimise the waste of time and resource consumed by face to face interaction where the patient would prefer support to be provided remotely and where this support can be done effectively.
Please remember that our Telehealth services are not emergency services rather they aim to help you understand how best to manage your condition and that includes knowing the best way of handling an emergency.
Our approach to Telehealth
We have a step up/step down approach to providing Telehealth that aims to give you the support you need it when you need it.
If you have severe health problems and would like to learn more about your condition and how to manage it with the aid of videos, questionnaires and reminders we have a Telehealth system that uses your TV.
If you understand your condition and how to manage it but feel you would benefit from reminders and feedback on how well you are looking after yourself, we also have a Telehealth solution that uses your mobile phone to provide a free to use text based service.
Finally if you fully understand your condition and how to manage it but feel that you would benefit from a periodic call to enquire as to how you are coping we have a telephone based service.
All our Telehealth solutions are supported by clinicians. This means that a nurse will discuss your condition with you, give you more information about the services available and help you decide the best Telehealth option for you. They will also be able to offer advice and support remotely as needed.
Our Telehealth Services
As at June ’14 we have two telehealth services. The Diabetes Specialist Nursing (DSN) Service uses an NHS created telehealth technology.
The Telehealth Team supports people with Diabetes, Heart Failure, Hypertension and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. The DSN service only uses telehealth to support people with diabetes.
Telehealth is an interactive TV based service the uses your TV and a top box. If you have a broadband internet connection already it can use this, otherwise a connection will be provided for use.
You will also receive wireless devices to measure weight and blood pressure and according to the long term condition(s) being managed other vital signs, such as blood glucose measurements and oxygen levels can be recorded.
An engineer will visit to set up the system and show you how to use it.
How does it work?
Before the Telehealth system is installed you will be given a complete health assessment by a nurse so that the service and care plan can be tailored to your needs. This will involve you recording your measurements on an agreed basis and being given feedback on your progress.
In addition daily content will be delivered including interactive surveys, relevant educational videos and personalized motivational messages.
Our nurses provide targeted information and feedback to encourage and support you in managing your own health in order to prevent or postpone a decline in your condition.
In ELFT we are using it to help patients monitor:
- heart failure
- chronic lung disease
For more information please contact the Telehealth Team on 020 8536 2335