During the past few years, the Preventative Technology Grant spurred many local authorities and PCTs into action to begin spending on telehealth to help reduce unplanned admissions.
Not as rosy as it is painted
Selling and marketing activities have been dominated by the market leaders, leveraging from their presence in other related markets. As a result there is now a plethora of telehealth pilots in operation throughout the UK; regularly boasted about by the market leaders. However, all is not as buoyant as it may appear.
Comments have been made by some observers that less than 50% of all the telehealth systems sold are actually in use. A great deal is still on shelves waiting for patient deployment and many of those in patients’ homes are not being used properly owing to poor patient compliance.
Three key elements for success
There are three key elements that make up a successful telehealth implementation:
1. Selecting the right patients: those most at risk of unplanned admissions and those which use community matron resource unnecessarily
2. Getting patient compliance and responding to non-compliance by having a tried and tested, effective induction process for patients
3. Having the community matrons embrace the technology and new ways of working. Experiential training is essential to help them understand that this change is not a threat
So the outcomes of telehealth are not so much to do with the technology as the implementation process. Why, therefore, do so many PCTs and so called ‘tele-experts’ just ask about, and compare the capabilities and price of, the equipment? Simply because they do not yet have the necessary telehealth experience.
Therefore, a fourth key element for a successful implementation is:
4. Speak with other PCTs that have already gained this experience and have fully deployed all their systems to patients that are using them each and every day
Let us put you in touch with the real experts
There are some PCTs that have this experience and Docobo would welcome the opportunity of putting you in touch with these real experts.
If you are passionate about improving the care in the community of patients with long term conditions and making savings like:
- Glenfield COPD team, that saved £100,000 in November and December 2008, or
- Darlington PCT whose telehealth patients are all over the age of 85 and all use telehealth daily, or
- Knowsley PCT who have experience of different telehealth suppliers…
then call Docobo on 01372 459866 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be pleased to help you leverage the expertise of our partner PCTs.
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