A site chief executive at King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust has revealed details of its large-scale transformation project to “create an ecosystem of technology solution providers that will help improve outpatient care across the Trust’s seven sites.”
Speaking at an online digital healthcare event organised by Intouch with Health, Jonathan Lofthouse, site chief executive at Princess Royal University Hospital, said the Trust is “seeking to re-imagine how care can be provided moving forward” and “build on the vibrancy and talent we have within our individual organisations and as an integrated care system across South East London and at Borough level.”
Mr Lofthouse said the project would also be crucial to help the trust deliver “rich, dynamic and high-quality outpatient services in a socially distanced format” in the case of further outbreaks of Covid-19.
He explained that executive directors across the Trust have “set about framing a 12 point strategy for improvement”.
He said: “Our System Health Improvement Plan contains many aspirations from the NHS Long Term Plan to help bring about health population improvement, and we have already started introducing best-of-breed technology to allow us to achieve our objectives.”
Mr Lofthouse explained the Trust is taking a phased approach to the introduction of a ‘Virtual Clinics’ platform designed by Intouch with Health and Healthcare Communications, where “full integration will be key to managing video consultations across our seven sites.”
He said: “We need to provide patients with the opportunity for extremely high-quality video consultations, but we also need to make it very easy for a clinician to administer that process.”
He explained: “We have already launched phase one which is video consultations with patients, and phase two will see us deploy the fully PAS-integrated Virtual Clinics platform so that each clinician can manage video and face-to-face patient consultations from one place, regardless of where they are located across the hospital group.
“Going forward, virtual clinics will help reduce the requirement for patients to attend hospital for their consultation, in turn giving them much greater convenience over their appointments while improving their overall experience and maintaining open lines of communication with their clinician.
“We will also be able to improve the experience for long-term-care patients by pro-actively managing them in their homes and improving levels of communication, while at the same time reducing pressure on clinicians and Trust resources.”
The Trust will also introduce Intouch with Health’s iReceptionist solution and use self-service kiosks to connect visiting patients across its four hospitals to a centralised reception team via video call.
Mr Lofthouse added that there was also a focus on elective procedures and care as part of the Trust’s Health Improvement Plan, including the deployment of Intouch with Health’s remote pre-operative assessment solution, Synopsis.
He said: “Technology allowing us to assess patients for pre-operative care who, ultimately, might not have their operations at King’s, will support our drive on infection control and social distancing objectives for our patients. They might receive their initial referral or diagnostic elements within the King’s hospital group, but, because of our hub and spoke model of care across South East London, their elective care might be provided by one of the other South East London units.
“We want the ability to share comprehensive pre-operative information with another provider that allows them to care for that patient in a blended and seamless manner. By the term blended I mean the management, on the same integrated platform, of those patients who present remotely for consultation alongside those who physical present at one of our hospital sites. This is the future of managed healthcare.
“In essence, over time, we want to create a technological eco-system that allows us to provide the best possible care not only at King’s, but across the entirety of the South East of London.”