Telecare ‘Which?’ support grows (UK)

Yes, it’s a bit of a trade puff for the Telecare EPG, and we don’t usually do ‘we-have-a-new-customer’ items, but it is good to note that 12 local authorities in the North East have signed a licence agreement so that they can access this source of independent, subscriber-funded device comparison information. Neil Revely of Sunderland City Council is reported as saying “…Matching the service user with the best technology is becoming an increasingly difficult task. The Telecare EPG will give prescribers the tools and knowledge to take advantage of new developments…” T-Cubed news item.

February Telecare LIN newsletter published (UK)

Out now, the February edition of the Telecare LIN newsletter. It, together with the separate supplement, contains “over 1200 news and events links over the last month” and a reminder that if you have not registered for the ALIP showcase event in Liverpool on 5/6 March or the Healthcare Innovation Expo on 13/14 March you need to act quickly. The newsletter has more details. PDF newsletter. Links supplement. NHS reforms supplement.

‘The big picture’, minus hype, of mobile in health

Refreshingly free of hype, and in fact rather dry, is the commentary of  Deborah Estrin, professor of computer science at Cornell NYC Tech (soon to be your Editor’s neighbor), at the 2013 annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Boston chaired by Google’s Vint Cerf. Essentially any phone can be a data platform; her focus is on converting apps to data streams, gauging frequency of use and GPS data for movement. Sensibly, she advises ‘scaling down’ apps to make them useful to individual patients. Undoubtedly she’s read the statistics on abandoned apps, estimated at about 95%–and that most everyone uses the same old apps, Google, Facebook, YouTube, Gmail etc. for about the same time as in 2011. But then she goes into how mobile can keep track of ‘digital exhaust’ a/k/a pollution…. Mobile Devices Linked to Better Health (  App Usage Has Stalled As Smartphone Users Hit Burnout (Business Insider)

O2 Health appoints new managing director (UK)

O2 Health has announced the appointment of Nikki Flanders as its managing director. Nikki has previously led O2’s 4G LTE strategy, developing awareness and understanding of 4G LTE, which offers superfast connectivity. She has previously worked for Centrica, WHSmith and Marks & Spencer, and has co-founded two health related charities, having had first-hand experience of how technology can help support healthcare as a mother who has used technology in the management of her son’s care during his early months. Nikki plans to accelerate O2 Health’s growth in the UK as part of Telefónica Digital, a global business unit of O2’s parent company. She replaces Keith Nurcombe, who has left Telefónica. [Press release on O2 Health website.]

Two free reports

Here are two free reports you should consider downloading.

First, The Center for ConnectedHealth’s 2007 Progress Report. Good if you want a wide-ranging look at current remote health monitoring and care delivery trends in the US. [And in Second Life…I wonder if not being able to fly or grow a tail count as health problems in that virtual world?] Interesting stuff, and you can download it from this page on the Center’s website.

Second, there’s the S2S (Strategies to Solutions) discussion paper, called Technology to Support the Ageing Global Population 2007 to 2027. It is 25 pages of balanced, well written information that ranges over assistive technology [a term used in its broad sense – compare with this post] including health- and care-related AT, and highlights various issues for society and emerging technology. You have to join the S2S mailing list to get it, but don’t let that put you off. Get it here.

Telecare and telehealth coming together in Norfolk (UK)

With a bit of editing and a slightly revamped commentary this video could become a useful introduction to telecare and telehealth for the public. However, people who know me will anticipate that I have a huge problem with Norfolk’s conflation of ‘assistive technology’ with telecare and telehealth, hence I’ve also categorised the video under ‘terminology’.

Let’s get this straight: ‘assistive technology’ is a very broad term for any equipment that helps compensate for some form of functional impairment. Or, as the Foundation for Assistive Technology (FAST) defines it, “Assistive Technology (AT) is any product or service designed to enable independence for disabled and older people.” A few shots at the beginning of the video imply that they understand this, but it soon slips into referring to the telecare and telehealth as AT. Although can be regarded as a subset of AT, there is no implication that AT has a remote component in any way, which is the key defining characteristic of telecare, telehealth, telemedicine, etc. When I was contracted to work at the Department of Health I frequently reminded civil servants and Ministers not to refer to telecare as ‘assistive technology’ and I thought that eventually the message did get through. At least by the time the Preventative Technology Grant conditions were published. And now it raises its head again…

OK, rant over! My thanks to Saneth Wijayaratna of Telemedcare Ltd for alerting me to the 7 minute video.




Tech Savvy Elderly May Boost Telecare Market

As regular Telecare Aware readers will know, Wireless Healthcare is a favourite source of articles, so it is a pity that in this commercial report they have produced they chose to perpetuate the use of the pejorative term ‘elderly’ instead of the less value-laden ‘older people’. Wireless Healthcare’s story on the report [Page URL “” reported to be compromised by malware 16 March 2015].

Nokia NFC Technology used by WELbeing

First time this Near Field Communication (NFC) technology is being used in this context the UK, I think. See the press release for an overview, the WELbeing (Wealden and Eastbourne Lifeline) website for an EXCELLENT video (link now also in the Video Library) and the Over-C website for more on the technical stuff.

Also, search Telecare Aware for ‘Hippocad’ for notes in April of this technology in use in France.

LogicMark’s Guardian Alert 911

An interesting product positioned half-way conceptually between Alertacall’s Safety Confirmation Service and a full-blown call center service. A product for fairly independent people and, as noted in Telecare Aware last March, being sold through the Winn-Dixie supermarket chain in the US as well as directly by LogicMark. Visit this website link to view a Guardian Alert 911 video. (Also in the Video Library)

New video: Telecare – Providing Dignity, Security and Efficiency (UK)

Just released ‘must see’ video on aspects of telecare by eGovTV. It covers:
• Expert Panel – Telecare Opportunities: 7 min
• Case Study- Notts Care Services – Award Winning Telecare: 6 min
• Case Study- Cheshire County Mainstreams Telecare: 8 min
• Case Study- Safety Confirmation – A New Approach to Telecare: 5 min
• Policy Drivers and Initiatives: 3 min
• Clarifying the Terminology: 4 min
• Service and Technology Options: 4 min
• Procurement through PASA: 3 min
• PTG Preventative Technology Grant: 2 min
• Key Challenges: 7 min
• Local Authority Progress to Date: 7 min
• The Future for Telecare: 6 min

More, and viewing link, on the videos page.

Westminster – Cisco’s Wireless City (UK)

This addition to the video library should give ammunition to all who are looking for substantial investment in telecare, along the lines that London Borough of Newham intends.

The video itself shows how Westminster invested many millions in wireless CCT systems to help keep its citizens and visitors safe on the streets. How about a similar spend to keep them safe in their homes? You need to be flash enabled and turn your sound on to view the Wireless City video on the Cisco website. (6:30 mins) (May take a few moments to load.)