Anglesey and Gwynedd Deploy Dual Language Telehealth Solutions for Community COPD Care

Multi-language telehealth monitors from Tunstall to promote greater patient self-management, reduce hospital admissions and deliver more targeted care tailored to local community requirements
By: Tunstall Healthcare
Oct. 14, 2009 - PRLog -- Anglesey and Gwynedd Local Health Boards have announced the launch of a joint telehealth monitoring service, which will provide improved care pathways and more person-centred support for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) within the home.  

The partnership between Anglesey and Gwynedd will initially see 20 dual language RTX telehealth monitors from leading supplier Tunstall Healthcare installed into COPD patients’ homes, enabling them to record their vital signs including blood pressure, blood oxygen levels and pulse.  

The results are monitored remotely on a daily basis by Anglesey County Council’s Gofal Môn Monitoring Centre who liaise with Advanced Community Nurse Practitioners and intelligent health logic questions investigate the patient’s current health status to support proactive case management and ensure timely and appropriate support if needed.  

The Local Authorities chose to deploy Tunstall’s RTX monitors as they can be programmed to run in multiple languages and will give local patients the choice of seeing and hearing English or Welsh. Whilst the patient may choose to interact with the monitor in Welsh, clinical and nursing teams are still able to work in English. This is the first multi-lingual telehealth services of its kind in Wales, and has been designed to reflect local requirements and meet the specific needs of individual patients.

Daily home monitoring with telehealth will result in an improved quality of life for patients, ensuring timely support when needed whilst also empowering patients to better understand and control their condition.  Anglesey and Gwynedd also believe that daily monitoring will allow more preventative care, reducing the number of unplanned hospital admissions, emergency ambulance call outs and GP visits therefore freeing up capacity to deliver services to more patients.

Nursing staff also benefit as they have greater resources and time in order to focus on proactive diagnosis and providing targeted support where it is needed.  As a result, respiratory nurses working in the two counties will potentially be able to increase their caseload, while improving patient outcomes for a greater number of patients.

Rhianwen Jones, Telecare & Community Support Projects Coordinator said – “Telehealth has provided us with an innovative way to help monitor COPD patients living in rural areas of Wales.  On average a district nurse makes 5.6 visits to patients a day, however with the aid of telehealth we hope to raise this to nine patients being monitored by one specialist nurse at a time.“

“By increasing the efficiency of our COPD services, we can support more patients in the home, to help avoid unnecessary GP and hospital visits and reduce the NHS carbon footprint.  Patients will see a real improvement in their quality of care too – telehealth educates them to be more aware of their symptoms and to proactively manage them, reducing anxiety and promoting independence.”

Matt Marshall, Tunstall Telehealthcare Director added:  “With cuts in public spending, it’s vital that we develop more preventative models of care to help lessen the need for costly secondary care and to make the best use of available health and local authority budgets.  

“Telehealth addresses this need, providing a cost-effective model of care for the management of long-term conditions such as COPD, and allowing healthcare providers to do more with less. Trusts that fail to embrace such innovative new care models will inevitably have to make cuts in other areas of patient care.”

Evidence from other telehealth deployments such as Sheffield has highlighted the potential of telehealth to deliver significant cost and efficiency gains for the NHS.  Sheffield’s innovative approach to managing the condition saw COPD-related hospital admissions dramatically decrease by 50%, saving the PCT money.

Isle of Anglesey County Council and Gwynedd Council have deployed the dual language telehealth solutions for community COPD care in partnership with Anglesey and Gwynedd Local Health Boards and the North West Wales Health Trust

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Tunstall Healthcare Group is the market leading provider of telehealthcare solutions, with over 2.5 million users globally. Tunstall’s solutions support older people and those with long-term needs, to live independently, by effectively managing their health and well-being. Tunstall provides technology, expertise and advice to millions of people enabling them to lead independent more fulfilling lives. For more information on how telehealthcare can improve quality of life, visit
Source:Tunstall Healthcare
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