North Tees NHS Foundation Trust has gone live with a new patient engagement platform that will enable its patients to manage their hospital appointments digitally through the NHS App.

The digital solution will help to enhance patient experiences, giving users much greater flexibility to manage their care through the app. They will be able to book, cancel and amend appointments, as well as view useful information that is relevant to their upcoming appointments and care.

In addition, patients can receive email and SMS notifications to be reminded of their upcoming appointments, which the trust hopes will reduce the number of did not attends (DNA).

Kath Tarn, head of outpatients and place based care at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust, said: “The new function on the NHS app makes managing your appointments much easier but we appreciate some people will prefer the traditional paper-based appointment system. Patients will be offered the chance to make, rearrange and cancel their appointments with the app. It’ll provide reminders of your appointment and alert you if anything changes.”

The platform has been developed in collaboration with Health Call, an NHS-owned digital health company. It is integrated with existing hospital systems and NHS App users, can use the same log-in details for continuity and ease of use.

Ian Dove, managing director at Health Call, said: “This is a significant step forward for North Tees in delivering more patient-centric digitally-enabled outpatients appointments.

“It reinforces our commitment to supporting healthcare providers in delivering convenient and efficient services to patients.”

The go live follows another MyHealthCall Pep go live at Gateshead Health Foundation Trust, just six weeks previously.

Initially, the platform will be piloted in the gastroenterology service, before being rolled out trust-wide.

Next year will see the release of additional functionality, including the ability to access and view hospital letters via the NHS app.