Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust is piloting a digital system from Accurx that can identify complexity early on in the elective surgical pathway, helping to minimise surgery cancellations.
The three-month pilot aims to identify low complexity patients and then route them to surgical hubs for their procedures. By spotting these low complexity patients and using surgical hubs in south east London, surgical procedures can be carried out more quickly and the hubs can be used more efficiently.
Dr Ramai Santhirapala, consultant anaesthetist and clinical innovator at Guy’s and St Thomas’, said: “I am delighted to be working on this new approach to managing the elective surgical waiting list, especially at a time when this is an urgent priority for patients.
“Every clinician aspires for excellence in timely, effective and safe patient care. Identifying the correct pathway for patients to receive timely care early in the perioperative pathway is an exciting opportunity.”
As patients are referred to Guy’s and St Thomas’ for surgery they will be digitally triaged using the Accurx system. Their condition will be categorised as either low complexity or medium/high complexity.
Guy’s and St Thomas’ clinical team is working closely with Accurx, project managers and patients to co-develop, test and deliver the automated triage system.
Jacob Haddad, CEO and co-founder of Accurx, said: “We’re working closely with the clinical team, project managers, and patients, to co-develop, test and deliver on a new automated, triaged way for patient complexity stratification at the point of referral. This is exactly how we like to work with a trust – a true partnership approach with embedded continuous improvement.”
The long-term ambition of the trust it to be able to put in place tailored support for those patients who are digitally triaged and categorised as medium/high complexity. The aim would be to support these patients ahead of their procedure to optimise their health to reduce the number of surgeries that have to be cancelled at short notice.
Adam Igra, director of innovation at Guy’s and St Thomas’, explained: “Looking ahead, we need to redesign pathways to support innovative ways of working. This new collaboration which brings together patient experience, clinical expertise and digital innovation is an exciting model of co-development for healthcare systems of the future.”
Recent innovations at Guy’s and St Thomas’ have also seen it work with Testcard’s ClearScreen app to turn mobile phones into clinical grade scanners, saving the trust time and money.