Mobility-restricted in Wales to receive online hospital appointments
9th October 2014
Elderly and mobility-restricted residents in rural north Wales are to be the first to trial out online doctor consultations to save them having to travel miles to the nearest hospital. It is hoped that the trial will be of huge benefit to those with mobility difficulties who struggle to travel outside their home as they may now be able to receive hospital care from home.
For Welsh residents who are reliant on reconditioned home stair lifts and similar mobility aids, this news will come as a huge relief as it will mean that they will not have endure uncomfortable and sometimes painful journeys just to visit their nearest hospital.
Of benefit to the elderly and taxpayer
The programme is thought to be of benefit to the taxpayer as well as elderly residents; it will free up ambulances that may have previously been needed to transport such individuals. The scheme, dubbed the Future Hospital Programme, is being run by the Royal College of Physicians, whereby patients are able to speak with their hospital consultant at their GP surgery during an internet video link appointment. If successful, the programme could be expanded into people’s homes, where those who need to use such mobility aids as an adapted riser recliner chair will have easy access to appointments they would currently find challenging to attend.
The internet video links will be made through secure NHS networks and will allow for consultants to see and speak to their patients at clinics set up in GPs’ surgeries and community hospitals. Starting in rural North Wales, this will be the best test of the programme as many elderly and mobility-restricted residents feel increasingly isolated from family, friends and community life in areas as rural as this, let alone from aspects that may impact on their health.
It is hoped that the findings of this programme will help to significantly improve the patient care experience of the UK NHS.
Image Credit: IzzatFulkrum (flickr.com)
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