3ml pivots, Lancashire telecare turns?

3millionlives goes sideways, again…

NHS England formally scrapped the planned seven ‘pathfinder sites’ projected to enroll 100,000 residents, in favor of a more limited scheme to gain adoption of telehealth in areas where ‘energy already exists’ in a new plan, ‘Integrated Care for 3millionlives’ to be delivered by March 2014. Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt in November 2012 set the 100,000 goal for 3ml; NHS England took over the program in April from the DH The totals tell the tale. An independent review by GP 8 Nov gave the total patient count as of September as just 2,368 patients in 20 active pathfinder CCGs (clinical commissioning groups). A spokesperson for NHS England quoted in GP stated that the goal of 3 million patients is still valid for 2017; Rachel Cashman, head of collaboration for excellence at NHS England, indicated at a conference that the plan would cover telehealth, telecare, telemedicine and telecoaching . If this were Silicon Valley, the word used would be the done-to-death ‘pivot.’  NHS England abandons health secretary’s pledge on telehealth (GP)3millionlives delivery plan by April (eHealthInsider)

As the world turns in Lancashire…

…it seems like a change in party control from Conservative to Labour has derailed the One Connect deal to provide telecare to county residents and possibly the career of the Conservative leader. The current Lancashire County councillors have charged that the deal, signed by the previous lead Councillor, would overcharge the county by £1.4million. One Connect is a 60/40 percent joint partnership between BT and the LCC. Muddying the waters is a personal dispute between the Conservative head and the Liberal Democratic leader. Tories turn on party leader (Lancashire Evening Post)

Worcestershire 3ML Pathfinder procurement canned

It seems that the much-vaunted Worcestershire 3ML pathfinder tender, already the subject of a critical TTA post on 5th July due to delays, has now been cancelled.

Tenderers apparently received letters late last week informing them that no offers had been received that met the combined risk sharing requirements of the original tender.  As a result, the telecare part of the tender is to be retendered on a standalone basis (more…)

Soapbox – what should a restructured 3millionlives do?

Times are tough for those who believe that technology can help improve the efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare delivery to improve patient outcomes. As pointed out by Richard Vize in the Guardian recently, telehealth has become the weapon of choice in the battle between GPs and the NHS, with publications such as Pulse and, most recently the HSJ, continuing to remind readers of the historic, and wholly-unrepresentative-of-telehealth cost effectiveness comparisons for the Whole System Demonstrator (WSD).

At the same time, the national Telehealth Forum’s survey of potential users indicated (more…)

3millionlives “axed”; long live 3millionlives

A report on the HSJ website headlined “Key telehealth group axed” appears to confirm what many have suspected: the ending of the 3millionlives programme. However reading down the article it transpires that actually all that is happening is a widening of the stakeholder grouping because of a perception that 3ML was too much about industry box-shifting and too little about improving patient outcomes, which should be welcomed greatly by many and should strengthen the programme.  As a result, industry will probably sell more too, so (more…)

How best to help older people to understand the benefit of technology? (UK)

Last week we reported on the survey commissioned by the National Telehealth Forum that found that 9 out of 10 people didn’t know what the word ‘telehealth’ meant, a proportion that was worse for those who were more likely to need it. We suggested that asking a different question about whether they knew that technology could enable them to remain in their own home might give a more positive response.

Well no sooner said than (sort of) done – Invicta Telecare reported a similar-sized poll that, among many, included the finding that “more than three out of five over-65s (65%)…admit they hadn’t seriously thought about the type of care and support they would prefer as they get older during the last five years”. Other responses in the interesting survey seem to confirm that a significant number of older people are in denial of the implications of their age so are inadequately prepared to remain independent.

This clearly strengthens the conclusion from our earlier piece, and from our retrospective on why O2 pulled out of this field of the increasingly pressing need to make people aware of how technology can support independent living. Is 3millionlives the way forward?

This is obviously a topic of great interest that will undoubtedly be debated this autumn particularly at the two conferences specifically aimed at how technology can supporting people to age well, run by the Kings Fund on 22nd October and the Royal Society of Medicine on 25 and 26th November. (Disclosure: Charles Lowe is one of the organisers of the latter).