Stroke Care Telecarts - Belfast Health and Social Care Trust

Industry: Healthcare

Company size: 12,000+

The Belfast Health and Social Care Trust is the largest integrated health and social care Trust in the United Kingdom. The telehealth for stroke care services are provided at Royal Victoria Hospital and embedded within the infrastructure that runs collaboration technology for the Health Service in Northern Ireland, with plans to install the stroke care system in hospitals across Northern Ireland.

In Summary

Challenges

  • Need to integrate various telehealth solutions with internal systems and allow access for consultants from any device.
  • Need for a solution that’s easy-to-access and efficient, to provide fast and reliable video diagnostic consultations for stroke patients, where time is critical.
  • To allow for accurate diagnostics, there was a need for exceptionally high quality audio and video.
  • Pexip Solutions

  • Pexip video integrated with HSL’s Telehealth solution, providing video conferencing that’s interoperable, easy-to-access, and secure.
  • Results

  • Telehealth carts for stroke patients that are integrated with Pexip video solutions.
  • The carts are connected to the hospital’s systems and the video consultants are easily accessible from any device.
  • Faster and more effective remote diagnostics, which lead to better patient outcomes.
  • Challenges

    Although remote diagnosis of emergency room patients with possible stroke symptoms had been available within the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust for several years, the improvement of the service, using Pexip-integrated HSL Telehealth solution, has brought a unique and innovative approach to this type of critical technology.

    The Trust’s previous virtual healthcare solutions ran on external systems, had no integration, and relied on dedicated devices and network services to work.

    "Time is of the essence when treating someone who has had a stroke."

    Says Dr. Enda Kerr, a leading consultant responsible for the diagnosis and care of potential stroke patients at Royal Victoria Hospital.

    “A staggering 1.9 million neurones are lost every minute during a stroke so literally every minute counts and that can be reversible if the patient can get treatment within the first three to four hours.”

    Therefore, emergency departments needed faster, more efficient solutions that could provide accurate and prompt diagnostic consultations for potential stroke patients.

    Why Pexip?

    HSL, a Pexip technology partner, began establishing its telehealth solution for stroke care in June 2019. Clinical trials were agreed to, and work began on converting a concept into a medical grade solution for stroke patients in Belfast.

    The Trust’s previous virtual healthcare solutions ran on external systems, had no integration, and relied on dedicated devices and network services to work.

    The telehealth service comes in the form of telecarts, which are integrated with Pexip’s video conferencing platform, and linked to the hospital’s existing ICT infrastructure. The carts can be wheeled into patient rooms and instantly connect via a simple app to a consultation from a specialist over Pexip-powered video conferencing. Pexip’s flexibility allows for these consultants to connect to the service quickly and from their device of choice, such as a laptop, smartphone, or laptop.

    Pexip’s ultra-high quality audio and video was also important to the set-up of these telecarts as an effective diagnostic tool. The clear video and low sound latency allows consultants to make more accurate diagnoses based on factors like speech, appearance, and behavior.

    “Being able to intervene, support our colleagues and conduct remote consultations with the patient from a tablet or phone has changed how we work and speeds up diagnosis and time-critical treatments.”
    - Dr. Enda Kerr, stroke patient consultant at Royal Victoria Hospital.

    Results

    After receiving positive feedback from leading consultants, the first integrations of the telehealth solution were installed in June 2020 and are now embedded within the infrastructure that runs all of the conferencing and collaboration technology for the Health Service in Northern Ireland. Once proven in Belfast, plans are in place to install the system in hospitals across Northern Ireland.

    Commenting on this exciting step in stroke care, consultant stroke physicians Dr Enda Kerr and Dr Michael McCormick said,

    “We are impressed by the simplicity and elegance of the solution. Time is of the essence when treating someone who has had a stroke, so literally every minute counts. The telehealth platform has the potential to make a significant contribution to improved patient outcomes after stroke.”

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