The latest Digital Health News industry round-up covers the release of IMX Interoperability Record, a new unified communications system and a win for an app supporting wound management post-op. 

NPIC expands reach with more funding

The National Pathology Imaging Co-operative (NPIC) has received a second wave of funding enabling a five-year deal with Sectra to be signed which will help extend its reach to more trusts.

The NHS initiative currently spans six trusts, digitising pathology services to improve patient diagnoses. The collaboration with medical imaging technology partner Sectra allows organisations within the co-operative to share digital images, send images to specialists more easily and embrace AI to enhance the diagnosis and management of illness.

The deal will see NPIC extend its support to more hospitals in the North of England but the agreement also allows it to scale its approach and the Sectra technology to hospitals country-wide. In addition, two new specialist digital pathology networks will be created in paediatrics and sarcoma tissue cancers, supporting national referral networks.

Basharat Hussain, deployment director at NPIC, said: “Our work may have begun with a regional focus, but we are moving to address some significant clinical priorities nationally in areas like paediatrics and sarcoma cancer, where pathology specialists are especially scarce. We have now identified a significantly bigger application for our programme. We have shown how digital pathology can work and we can help the rest of the NHS replicate and scale using our learnings, in order to get pathology digitised to support better patient care.”

The agreement follows a separate government announcement made in November committing £248 million over the next year to help modernise NHS diagnostics using the latest technology.

Leeds Teaching Hospitals give students digital experience

The digital team at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust offers students a bespoke intern programme giving them the chance to gain paid work experience.

Since the programme launched in 2018, it has helped 25 students gain experience within a supportive environment.

Martin Waugh, associate director of digital, heads up the development team at Leeds. He said: “Our interns have done some fantastic work over the past few years. They play a really important role in the team, helping us realise the potential for new functionality, and have been invaluable during the covid pandemic, getting involved in new releases and helping to expedite the development of key pieces of functionality.”

Leeds work exclusively with Leeds University Union Joblink team to provide the opportunities to students.

Miiskin’s skin tracking platform supports dermatology research

The digital skin health platform, Miiskin, has opened its technology to academic researchers for free to support digital collaboration within new dermatology research in the UK.

It recently developed an AI-powered digital teledermatology platform, which is now freely available for scientific research into skin cancer, wound care and conditions like rosacea, acne, psoriasis and eczema. Skin care research subjects will be able to use the Miiskin app and connect with researchers via a secure web portal to share high definition photos and structured patient reported information.

The Miiskin app is powered by AI and allows users to document and track moles, lesions and other chronic skin conditions over time. Advanced features include face tracking, augmented reality mole sizing, automatic skin imaging for full body images and the first of its kind wide-area skin-mapping tech.

NHS Scotland collaboration improves radiology services

Following a successful year-long pilot, NHS Golden Jubilee has been confirmed as home to the new Scottish National Radiology Reporting Service (SNRRS).

The service combines innovative technology and existing capacity to allow consultant radiologists to remotely report on diagnostic images from anywhere within Scotland.

The collaboration between NHS Golden Jubilee and NHS National Services Scotland has seen the deployment of Share+, a cross-board radiology reporting solution, creation of a service implementation team, the rollout of home workstations, and the recruitment of Consultant Radiologists to join the bank.

In the future NHS Golden Jubilee hopes to further expand the service by growing reporting capacity and exploring news ways to increase cross-board reporting, in order to maximise service provision for patients.

ReStart announces release of IMX Interoperability Record

ReStart has released IMX-IR, which will assist trusts and integrated care systems with their digital transformation projects across the NHS. The addition of the IMX-IR product will being interoperable digital care and consistency to any interoperability assignment.

ReStart’s existing product, IMX Platform, has already provided organisations with the tools and expertise needed to deliver interoperability strategies. IMX-IR will provide a range of NHS-led solutions to trusts.

Mike Symers, managing director at ReStart, said: “Our IMX Interoperability platform offers many different possibilities for the delivery of better patient care within trusts, ICSs and other NHS organisations wishing to improve their digital maturity. We offer IMX to decision makers making choices on how to solve NHS demands around integrated care.

“The ability to provide solutions to such diverse programmes is a credit to the flexibility of the IMX platform and our staff who are true integration experts. Our belief in ‘Open Technology’ optimises existing software, and recognises there will be proprietary, new and open-source systems co-existing together. It ensures that the customer is consistently able to move towards lower cost solutions.”

Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh Teaching Hospitals modernises legacy telephony systems

Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (WWL) has gone live with  Cinos’ Cisco Powered Unified Communications service in order to modernise its existing legacy telephony systems.

The roll out is part of its 2030 strategy, with the trust looking to develop its digital capabilities and implement a modern, resilient unified communication (UC) service across the organisation.

The contact centre solution was delivered at the end of last year, which is enhancing the patient experience. The current phase of the project is replacing existing telephony with a modern IP solution.

The UC platform offers a range of channels that will allow employees to work effectively with each other and provide an optimised patient engagement journey. These include web and video conferencing, voice calling, desktop sharing and instant messaging.

Malcolm Gandy, chief information officer at WWL, said: “The service has been designed in line with our newly announced digital strategy, which supports our investment in the latest digital and cloud technologies. It was so important that we selected the right solution and right supplier for this project to ensure positive outcomes for our staff and our patients.”

Ada Health’s AI solutions available on Epic app Orchard

Epic customers can now integrate Ada’s AI-powered symptom assessment, care navigation and handover capabilities into their own platforms, as they are made available on the Epic App Orchard marketplace.

The integrations will make it easier for patients to better manage their healthcare journeys, make informed decisions about their health and wellbeing and share critical information ahead of health consultations.

Health systems and care providers will be able to offer users trustworthy, AI-powered tools within their Epic MyChart Patient portal. This can help streamline the assessment process through the symptom assessment tool saving healthcare professionals time. The handover report will help them to deliver better informed clinical recommendations to patients.

In addition, Ada’s secure single sign on (SSO) capabilities support a seamless care journey and by pre-populating assessments with information from medical records can save the user time. It can also connect to clients’ own appointment scheduling systems.

Project to reduce surgical infections wins awards

A new app designed by the surveillance team at Royal Brompton and Harefield Hospitals and colleagues across King’s Health Partners, has now won three awards for patient care, and is being used at Evalina London.

The app allows children and their families to take images of their surgical wounds post-operation and digitally send them to their clinical team, without having to travel to Evalina London.

It was awarded for ‘Innovation in Surgical Site Infection’ at the Journal of Wound Care World Union of Wound Healing Societies Awards. The win follows on from success at the Health Tech Digital Awards, where it won in two categories: New Health Tech Innovation of the Year and Best Innovation Project of the Year.

The app was created in collaboration with health tech company Isla, and allows Evalina London’s clinical team to monitor the rate at which wounds heal after a patient is discharged. It was rolled out to patients and their families last summer. The child’s recovery is monitored by the clinical team, with families submitting weekly photos for up to four weeks. This allows any sign of infection to be spotted quickly.

Trio healthcare explores UK’s thoughts and opinions on health-related topics

Trio Healthcare has used Google search data to uncover the illnesses and conditions that people in the UK may not understand, in a bid to raise more awareness of them.

It also carried out its own survey, which revealed 92% of people have searching online about a medical condition. Just over half of the 1,000 people surveyed (51%) said if they had any health concerns or symptoms they would first search online.

The Google data showed that lupus was the condition that Brits were most likely to Google with an average of 27K monthly searches, followed by anxiety, MS and sepsis which all garnered an average of 22,200 monthly searches. The top four were followed by gout (18,100), COPD (14,800), Crohn’s Disease (14,800), Schizophrenia (14,800), haemorrhoids (12,100) and dementia (12,100).