The latest Digital Health News industry roundup includes a new partnership for a digital health information prescription service, contract wins for a healthcare procurement technology company and a donated da Vinci surgical system.

Consultant Connect platform helps avoid unnecessary hospital trips

Consultant Connect, the NHS advice and guidance telemedicine platform, has placed one million calls between primary carers and consultants and is keeping patients out of hospital, by helping to ensure that unnecessary hospital visits and appointments are being avoided.

During the Covid pandemic, there was a widespread adoption of teledermatology. Since 2019 Consultant Connect’s National Consultant Network has increased the number of calls and messages it has taken by nearly 3,000%.

The platform’s photo app has seen a nearly 2,000% increase in its use since the pandemic. Of those photo message sessions, more than two in three led to an unnecessary referral to a consultant being avoided.

Ambulance staff who have used the service to get advice before transporting a patient to hospital, have been able to avoid more than one in three patients being sent to hospital when it wasn’t needed.

Two in three calls from GPs to elective care specialities have meant an unnecessary trip to hospital was avoided.

Consultant Connect’s annual benchmarking data analysis also revealed that primary and secondary health providers have exchanged 125,000 information governance-secure text messages via the platform, since its launch seven years ago.

Jonathan Patrick, CEO of Consultant Connect, said: “These impressive growth statistics tell the story of an advice and guidance platform that is fast becoming part of the fabric of the NHS.

“We’ve had fantastic feedback from GPs and consultants – and we’re delighted that millions more patients are benefiting from our services.”

Royal College of Surgeons England display early da Vinci system

Royal College of Surgeons England (RCS England) has been donated a da Vinci Si robotic-assisted surgical system by Intuitive.

The da Vinci system is on display in the college’s newly transformed headquarters as a showcase of the early adoption of robotic-assisted surgery in England and a nod to the college’s vision for the future of surgery.

The first procedure using a da Vinci surgical system in the UK was carried out in 2000. More than two decades on, around 89% of patients undergoing a radical prostatectomy do so using a robotic system.

Around the world da Vinci systems have carried out more than 10 million procedures.

The example of a third-generation Si system was unveiled in the RCS England’s atrium by Professor Neil Mortensen, president of the organisation.

He said: “Our new HQ is visited by the best and brightest surgeons from around the world. They come to teach, to study and to exchange ideas.

“Surgeons are famously enthusiastic about innovation. We are early adopters of technology and always curious about how new techniques can enhance and support surgical care to improve outcomes for their patients. So I am delighted to welcome a da Vinci system to our fantastic new building, to prompt discussion and debate on the future of surgery.”

Radar Healthcare to integrate with Nourish Care

Radar Healthcare has announced plans for a software integration with Nourish Care.

The integration will allow care services to report incidents directly to quality and compliance experts Radar Health, from within the Nourish app.

The partnership will reduce the need for multiple systems to be accessed at the point of care, which will free up time to be spent with residents.

Using the Nourish app, care providers will be able to record incidents, such as a resident’s fall. The incident data will be captured by Radar Healthcare for analysis and reporting and ensure the information at the point of care can be accessed in real-time by the whole care team.

Any information recorded within the Nourish app will be instantly integrated within Radar Healthcare’s platform, with the status and outcome pushed back to the Nourish app too. This seamless integration will allow care providers to analyse incident data to help foresee future events and take preventative measures where needed.

Mark Fewster, chief product officer for Radar Healthcare, said: “Our software integration will make a big impact on the provision of care and resident safety.

“On the frontline, it’s about recording events in the best possible way ensuring the right information is captured accurately and in real-time. There is no duplication and care providers will have access to comprehensive data insights from within the Radar Healthcare platform so they can make informed decisions about improvements to risk and compliance issues. All of this empowers providers and helps to deliver better outcomes.

AdviseInc wins ICS contracts

Healthcare procurement technology company AdviseInc has won contracts with a number of integrated care systems (ICS) and NHS trusts.

Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes ICS; Norfolk and Waveney ICS; Hertfordshire and West Essex ICS; Suffolk and North East Essex ICS; Cambridgeshire and Peterborough ICS; Mid and South Essex ICS; and Leicestershire and Rutland ICS will all be using AdviseInc’s Procurement Dashboard (PD).

They are joined by North West London ICS, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, who will be using Procurement Dashboard Plus (PD+).

PD and PD+ delivers customers complete visibility of their spend data to help teams identify saving opportunities and to compare products across suppliers. PD+ also offers further analytical support from AdviseInc’s team of experts.

In addition, Cheshire and Merseyside ICS have agreed to work with the company to achieve greater value for money from their procurement data.

Mat Oram, CEO and co-founder, AdviseInc, said: “As a team, we’ve invested significant time and resources into creating a procurement analytics service that provides users with complete oversight and meaningful value.

“We’re extremely happy to be extending our services across the NHS and working with new organisations. We understand how important procurement data is, and our solutions are helping provide NHS organisations with invaluable visibility and analysis, allowing teams to add value to their spend data and maximise value to the fullest.

“We pride ourselves on being more than just a product for procurement teams, but rather a service. The upcoming launch of the new AdviseInc Platform and Control Tower go further in providing NHS procurement teams with complete oversight, greater control over the data they see and drive actions in areas it is needed most.”

Control Tower is to be rolled out by the end of the current financial year.

Menopause app partners with digital health information prescription service

Menopause app balance is helping women to make informed decisions about their treatment by teaming up with healthcare tech company Cognitant Group and its health information prescription service Healthinote.

The healthinote platform collects evidence-based health information that healthcare professionals can share with patients via a digital health information prescription. It’s already integrated with over 3,000 GP practices in the UK, and is now available to balance app users too.

The partnership will see Healthinote gain access to balance’s archive and use its up-to-date content and evidence-based information so that professionals can share it with their patients who need support.

Gaele Lalahy, chief operating officer of of balance, said: “We are excited to be working with Healthinote and embrace innovative digital health platforms as a conduit to empower women to make informed decisions about their health during the perimenopause and menopause.

“This partnership will help thousands of women access evidence-based information via digital prescriptions from their healthcare professional in a brand-new way.”

balance is already well established in the patient’s treatment pathway. It is the only menopause app certified by ORCHA and already features in digital health libraries for the NHS and other national health bodies across the world.

Countess of Chester adds IT specialist to new National Framework Agreement

The Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust’s commercial procurement services has awarded Kingsfield IT a place on its new National Framework Agreement, to provide a sustainable and cost-effective method for extending the life cycle of electronic devices.

Under the framework, Kingsfield will provide crucial repair services over the next four years, ensuring access to essential services for thousands of frontline workers.

The National Framework Agreement for the provision of Refurbished Electronic Devices and Repair Services is the first of its kind in the UK.

Brian Boys, Kingsfield managing director, said: “We’re delighted to have been awarded a place on this framework and believe it will support so many hospital trusts, local councils, and blue light services across the country. All repairs will then be covered with an appropriate warranty. Our team will also offer access to loan devices under this agreement.

“Our support will help significantly reduce the environmental impact caused by a high device turnover. In the long-term, we aim to save the public sector thousands by maintaining their existing IT estate to ensure a lengthy lifespan, as opposed to buying or upgrading equipment more frequently.”