An innovative ‘telehealth’ system designed to help staff monitor the health of residents in nursing and residential care homes has been rolled out across North Tyneside.
The Whzan system contains a blood pressure monitor, thermometer and a simple device to monitor blood oxygen levels which are analysed by the device and generate a National Early Warning Score (NEWS2).
The NEWS2 is a universal measure understood by GPs, ambulance and hospitals, which is used to identify the early deterioration of residents and to support clinical decision-making. Informed clinical decision making ensures that the patient receives the correct level of care at the correct time.
Staff using the NEWS score have clear guidance on when to involve healthcare professionals in the care of their residents.
Ruth Marshall Clinical Quality Lead Nurse at NHS North Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group said: “North Tyneside faces the challenges of an ageing population, with the number of older people in the borough set to increase by almost 50% within the next 15 years. As the elderly population increases, so too do demands on hospital and home care.”
“By using systems such as Whzan, we are able to ensure that care home residents are getting the right care at the right time in the community, avoiding the need for any unnecessary hospital visits. It is hoped that the use of Whzan will help to support staff to make the right decisions and improve the patient’s experience of healthcare”
The new system will not only benefit residents in care homes, but will help to give carers the confidence they need to relay information to medical professionals at the right time.
Laura Tindle, Registered Manager at Howdon Care Centre said:
“Whzan digital health system has enhanced resident care within our home. It has enabled staff to assess resident’s physical observations more efficiently, which allows for more appropriate GP and hospital referrals.
“Having the additional knowledge of NEWs and the equipment to assess the score has improved communications between care home staff and GPs, reducing unnecessary GP visits and also reducing the use of ambulances and hospital admissions.”