Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has awarded a three-year contract to Docobo to scale up its telehealth services in the area.

Liverpool CCG began ramping up its telehealth efforts in 2013 as part of its More Independent (Mi) Programme. The service uses a combination of education and remote monitoring tools to support people living at home with lung conditions, heart failure or diabetes.

The clinical hub now supports around 900 patients at a time, with some 5,300 patients having benefited from the programme in total.

However, Liverpool CCG now intends to scale this up to 4,000 to 5,000 patients a year, using the new Doc@Home platform supplied by Docobo.

Approximately 50 patients per week are being recruited on to the Doc@Home system, with this number expected to ramp up in the coming months as patients are moved over from the previous platform, supplied by Philips.

Adrian Flowerday, managing director of Docobo, said: “Liverpool is one of the most experienced users of telehealth in the country, by some distance, so we are particularly pleased that they have chosen Docobo to move forward from where they are today.

NHS trusts in Liverpool and the surrounding area have long been enthusiastic users of telehealth services.

In November The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust announced plans to trial a new system allowing patients to have remote appointments with nurses.

And St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals has started pilots of video consultation clinics in the hopes of establishing a business case for telehealth technologies.

Of the Docobo expansion, Carol Hughes – clinical and operational lead for health technology at Liverpool Community Health NHS Trust – said: “Liverpool has been a trailblazer for delivering telehealth at scale and has produced some great improvements in our local patient outcomes and wellbeing.

“However, this is something that we now want to see used for the benefit of all patients, across the wider local health economy. It is embedded into the local health economy, and now is the time to grow. This is a really exciting time.”

Docobo said it stands to gain up to £11.5 million from the contract if Liverpool CCG subsequently opts to extend it from three years to five, based on patient demand and the potential for its use in other long term conditions.