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July 2020
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AS the world of primary medical care advances into the 21st century, few companies have done more to change the face of the industry than Telehealth Solutions Limited. The progressive firm, established in 2006, has made it its mission to provide a remote monitoring service for patients across the UK.

This rapidly rising young company has stepped up to the plate to offer medical professionals and patients alike the chance to embrace the future.

The Telehealth Solutions product list proudly proclaims the presence of a group of ‘pods’, which are prefixed in such a way to make them easily identifiable to both professionals and patients.

These are the CardioPod, HomePod, SurgeryPod, Check-in Pod and CarePod. Each one of these cost-effective and highly effective machines has secured its place in the medical world and is turning conventional care on its head.

One of the main benefits is that patients suffering from chronic conditions that need to be monitored regularly can now do so from home.

This has helped free up valuable time for both GPs and frontline medical professionals, who no longer have to make house calls as data is transferred from the patient on a regular basis. The CardioPod, recently launched by shadow health secretary Mary Scanlon MSP at a pharmacy in Edinburgh, is already changing the face of 21st century primary healthcare.

This remarkable machine, usually installed in pharmacies, offers patients the chance to pop in for a professionally supervised heart check that takes no longer than 20 minutes.

A small blood sample is taken, which registers blood glucose and cholesterol levels. The pharmacist then asks a series of questions and the answers given, combined with the blood results, calculates the risk of the patient having developing cardiovascular disease within the next decade.

These results appear on screen in an easy to follow format – with smiling faces representing heart health and frowning faces representing the patient’s risk of having a heart attack. A personal health check report is processed, allowing the patient to set health goals, which can be anything from smoking cessation and cutting alcohol consumption to taking more exercise.

Afterwards, a clinical report is printed out and given to the patient to take to his or her doctor, if necessary. These results can be, when the system is programmed to do so, sent to the patient’s GP for action.

The HomePod is also another groundbreaking machine for patients with a series of chronic conditions, such as diabetes, asthma or heart disease, who find themselves in and out of hospital on a regular basis. Using wireless technology, the HomePod encourages people to take control of their own health by issuing reminders to take medication, weigh themselves or go for a walk as previously discussed with their GP.

The machine also has the facility to take blood oxygen readings and monitors ailments, like coughs, through a series of targeted questions to ensure nothing is getting out of control. Results are fed back to the GP, who can keep track of the patient’s health without leaving the surgery.

Time-saving for hard-pushed GPs is also where the multilingual SurgeryPod comes in. Usually placed in waiting rooms, the machine offers the chance to have health checks before they go to see the doctor. As the information collected on health and lifestyle by the HomePod is then relayed to the GP electronically, it means they have more time to spend working out a way forward with the patient when they come in for a personal consultation.

Telehealth Solution’s executive chairman Jeremy Cummin, the force behind the emergence of the Watford-based firm three years ago, is remarkably frank about the reaction the firm’s technology has sparked among users.

Adding that he was delighted with Self-Care week and the work it does to promote the work firms like Telehealth Solutions do to encourage self-care through remote-monitoring, he said: -In short, patients love our systems as they offer them a sense of freedom and also the peace of mind that they are taking charge of their own health. It also removes the temptation for self-diagnosis, which is all too common given accessibility to the Internet, but which can be very dangerous.

-For today’s NHS professionals, most of who are bound by budget constraints, there is no doubt that offering patients the chance to take charge of their own health where appropriate – and with remote medical guidance – is a fantastic step forward.

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