Lenus Health developed an award-winning platform to tackle

COPD with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde

Virtual care in action

Remote patient monitoring systems are driving down unnecessary hospital admissions

From time immemorial, an invariable feature of the interaction between a patient and doctor is that it has taken place, in person, either in the GP surgery or hospital. Te status quo is changing. Te

global pandemic COVID-19 pres- ents a unique challenge to health systems around the world and will necessitate the adoption of innovative virtual care solutions. Ingrained patient and clinical be-

haviours, entrenched stakeholder interests and a complex regulatory

framework have made it difficult to operationalise and scale new technology enabled approaches. However, recent events will

bring about a paradigm shift to distribute increasing volumes of healthcare interventions away from the hospital and, to the home and community. While CO- VID-19 will likely be the catalyst there are good reasons why this should happen in any case. Since the NHS was founded in

1948, the burden of disease has radically changed from acute infectious diseases to managing more people living longer with chronic long-term conditions. New virtual care platforms

such as are capable of supporting an ecosys- tem of virtual care solutions that can provide care teams with rich knowledge of a patient from

afar and on a continuous basis. Wearable devices, sensors

and digital services can moni- tor health information remotely, engaging patients and carers, and enabling better self-management. Artificial intelligence can

convert these data streams into actionable insight, prioritising patients that require an interven- tion to prevent a distressing and expensive hospital admission. Our award-winning project for

remote management of COPD pa- tients (patients with chronic lung disease), developed in collabora- tion with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde is an example of a virtual care model in action today. Moreover, while virtual care

can offer effective care delivery, particularly at this time for those patients with weakened immune systems who are in the highest risk category of COVID-19, they can also enhance clinical produc- tivity. Te NHS is always being asked to do more for less. Our asynchronous virtual

clinic service, developed in col- laboration with NHSScotland, moves beyond simply digitising the current outpatient model


to a service model that delivers greater patient throughput for the same level of resources and meets patients expectations around convenience and flexibility. Finally, a recent study by the

American Journal of Preventative Medicine found that clinical care, the primary focus of healthcare, accounts for around 15% of over- all health outcomes while health behaviours, social status and ge- netics account for the other 85%. As recent events illustrate, we

live in an increasingly intercon- nected world where technology and data play an increasingly important role. Now, more than ever, is the time to harness the increasingly sophisticated data generated outside of the hospital system to deliver better healthcare and health outcomes for all. l copd virtual-clinics/

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