Heart specialist

NHS heart specialist develops virtual service technology

NHS Heart specialist develops London’s first specialist virtual service technology: London’s Remote Cardiac Monitoring Program to support the Cardiac Surgery Waitlist with Ortus-iHealth.

One of the first major implementations of remote monitoring technology in the UK will reduce risk and improve care for up to 8,000 patients awaiting heart surgery using the Ortus platform

Eight specialized centers could also deploy the information and communication platform to improve services for the 1.2 million people living with heart disease in the capital.

Thousands of Londoners with heart conditions will receive better care thanks to a London Remote Heart Monitoring program to be rolled out using technology from Ortus-iHealth.

The program was commissioned on behalf of the South and North London Cardiac Operational Delivery Networks, with transformation funding of £750,000 from NHSX (now part of the NHS England Processing Branch).

It will enable the eight tertiary cardiac centers based in major hospitals in the capital to adopt the Ortus-iHealth platform, developed by Dr. Debashish Das, consultant cardiologist at Barts Health NHS Trust.

Initially, patients awaiting cardiac surgery will use the system to complete questionnaires and submit data to a “virtual service” dashboard monitored by their clinical team.

Patients with deterioration will be identified, prioritized and supported by message, video consultation or clinic consultation, as appropriate.

Stephen Edmondson, Clinical Director of NHSE Cardiac Network, London Region, said: “We have a responsibility to keep our patients as safe as possible as they wait longer for life-saving heart surgery due to the impact of the pandemic. This means that we need to identify patients whose condition is deteriorating and offer earlier intervention if necessary.

“The Ortus digital platform, which has been acquired on behalf of all major London cardiac centers, creates a user-friendly digital service environment for patients and clinicians to continuously monitor and redefine our patients.

“We wanted such a digital solution to improve the overall patient experience. The Ortus platform, which can be web-based or app-based, also provides digitized information regarding their particular processing, digitized consent, and digitized tracking and tracking.

Especially in times of limited resources and capacity, the Ortus platform will also facilitate earlier exit in a safer and more responsive tracking framework.

London is the first city in the UK to set up a remote monitoring program on this scale. The eight specialist heart centers that will be involved not only treat patients from across the capital, but also from referral hospitals in the counties around the M25.

The initial focus is on the cardiac surgery pathway because after the pandemic there are 1,400 patients on the cardiac surgery waiting list, and it is growing by 100 patients a week.

The NDOs who sponsored the program want to reduce as much as possible the risk of these patients becoming sicker or being hospitalized urgently. They also want to ensure that these patients receive fair service.

All hospitals involved in the program will adopt the same patient journeys, the same cutting-edge technology and offer the same service to patients, wherever they live. Eventually, 8,000 patients could benefit from it.

Gary McAllister, Chief Technology Officer at OneLondon, a collaboration between Integrated Care Systems London and the London Ambulance Service, said: “Remote monitoring and virtual wards are a fundamental enabler for sustainable and transformed clinical pathways. The acquisition of Ortus will provide a core capability for London, providing cardiac and other departments with the tools to develop innovative new ways of working.

“Ortus’ interoperability with the London Care Record is fundamental to the delivery of transformed cardiac services, extending the reach of cardiac information to all services in the region. Region-wide access to cardiac information will improve the quality, efficiency and safety of care for patients cared for by London trusts.

Ortus-iHealth can also be used to support patients on other cardiac pathways, to give them information about their condition, help them prepare for treatment and ensure they spend as little time as possible in the heart. hospital.

This means that once implemented, it will be possible to expand the use of the Ortus platform to support the 1.2 million people with heart conditions in London.

For example, it might be possible to support patients who have been discharged after treatment for a heart attack. These patients must take increasingly larger doses of drugs to strengthen the heart, in a process known as titration.

Dr. Das and his team originally developed Ortus-iHealth because they wanted to ensure patients treated at Barts Heart Center were titrated correctly and responded to ongoing care.

During the Covid-19 pandemic, Ortus-iHealth meant that they could also discharge patients 1-2 days after surgery, instead of the usual 3-5 days, to reduce their risk of contracting the disease at home. hospital.

Experiences like this have sparked interest in the idea of ​​setting up virtual services or remote monitoring programs in NHS.

But Dr. Das points out that to be safe and effective, they must use technology to collect and analyze data and to keep patients in touch with their clinicians.

“You can’t just send someone home with a blood pressure monitor,” he said. “You need a dashboard to collect and analyze this data, and you need easy communication between patient and clinician.

“If I’m working in my hospital, I’ll walk around the ward, review the observations, talk to the patient and make a plan; and if I’m working in a virtual service, I need to be able to do the exact same things. That’s why we created Ortus-iHealth.

“It collects quantitative data, such as blood pressure readings and symptoms entered by the patient, and qualitative data, such as responses to questionnaires. It displays this data on a dashboard, alongside a patient communication link.

“That means I can message you to say, ‘I’ve seen your observations, and they appear to be correct’ or, ‘I’ve been alerted to a problem, and that’s what we’re going to do.’

“What’s so exciting about London’s remote heart monitoring program is that it was developed by experts who have tried virtual rooms before and understand what is needed to make them work.

“This is the first truly pan-London remote monitoring program for any clinical specialty, and we are delighted that our solution has been recognized as the best option to support both clinicians and patients.”


About Ortus-iHealth:

Ortus-iHealth is a digital healthcare company, established in 2017 by Barts Hospital Consultant Cardiologist Dr. Debashish Das. It provides a digital outpatient solution that facilitates the efficient delivery of treatments from referral to discharge.

It offers patient and clinician portals that support scheduling remote, asynchronous, or local consultations with remote collection of PROMs, symptoms, and vital signs prior to consultations that are reviewable throughout the patient journey. Clinical dashboards and patient journey content are configured for specific condition and journey needs, allowing clinicians to determine and prioritize consultations and exams based on clinical needs and PIFU requests.

Configurable journeys can include multiple elements in automated workflows, including remote monitoring, consent, and patient education content. The goal is to maintain engagement with patients, while increasing access, reducing DNA and easing pressure on clinics. With integration to the PAS and EHR platforms, Ortus is a single solution for all ambulatory and perioperative needs.

The development of Ortus will focus on improving decision support through the use of AI and broader integration, further supporting clinicians and their patients with the most informed experience and the most transparent throughout the treatment journey.

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