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Smart with your heart

Digital health technologies

BACKGROUND

Funded by Innovate UK, Bitjam has partnered with a large hospital trust, and three innovative health technology companies to deliver ‘Smart with your Heart’.

The £1.2 million project at University Hospital of North Midlands Trust’s (UHNM) is enabling heart failure patients to better care for themselves and prevent readmissions into the hospital.

THE PROJECT

With the support of community staff at Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (MPFT), 300 patients piloted 3 digital health technologies:

Florence is a telehealth SMS service powered by Bitjam’s software and Simple telehealth’s methodology. It enables patients to respond to text messages asking how they are feeling compared to their last text message – same, better or worse, or ask how they are against a professionally designed symptom checker. Information is collated by the telehealth co-ordinator and circulated to clinicians if necessary.

Recap Health is an online health library holding videos and information tailored to patients’ need and condition, aiding self-managed care.

The final tool in the box of these heart failure patients is i-Navigator . A social prescribing tool, which is a key component in the NHS vision of Universal Personalised Care. Patients can be easily referred to link workers from range of local health and public service agencies. Self-referral is encouraged.

Alongside our work with the partners of the project we were delighted to be able to facilitate their data analysis with a purpose-built dashboard for all data to be processed, integrating with UHNM Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) system.

Bitjam won the contract to evaluate the service because of our expertise with Big Data. Our dashboard imports data from the HES system, community services provided by MPFT and the 3 digital technologies partners.

The dashboard’s aim is to see in real-time how the service is doing, and if it is meeting its KPIs. In essence, it allows clinicians and management the ability to see how many patients are signed up and using the system and of those patients how many have been able to manage their condition in the community and prevent readmittance into hospital.

OUTCOMES

It is estimated that this project alone could lead to 24,000 fewer hospital admissions in the region, 240,000 fewer bed days and save the NHS £60m.

Feedback from patients during the first three months of the project shows that 79 per cent of participants did not need to visit A&E and 74 per cent did not need to see their GP. Patients also reported they were more confident in managing their own health at home.”

From the results so far, we hope that if the project was rolled out nationally it could mean a reduction of 24,000 of the 80,000 heart failure admissions annually - with a potential cost saving of £45 million and freeing approximately 240,000 beds.

It was great to be working alongside the main partners of an innovative piece of work to make an impact on enhancing patient care.

The project was named as winner of the Driving Efficiency Through Technology at the 2021 Health Service Journal Awards, recognising their outstanding contribution to healthcare.

Dr Dargoi Satchi, Project lead and Consultant Cardiologist at UHNM said: “We were absolutely delighted to have been shortlisted in three categories but to be named as the winners in the Driving Efficiency through Technology Award is the icing on the cake. It means a great deal to all those involved to be recognised in this way and we’re confident that the positive impact of this Award will help to create a long-lasting legacy to the benefit of our patients.”