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Care homes in Cumbria and Nottinghamshire are piloting a diagnostic telemedicine system that allows doctors to undertake virtual care home rounds.
The Teki-Hub system was developed by GPs and is being trialled by the Pathfinders specialist and complex care centre for physical health needs in Nottinghamshire and Kirksanton care home in Cumbria.
The telemedicine equipment includes a no-touch infrared thermometer, digital stethoscope, otoscope and tongue depressor attachments. The system uses Wi-Fi, mobile or satellite networks to connect to GP surgeries, community services or hospitals, so clinicians can use video to direct care home staff to administer tests.
The video consultation platform, part of the system, allows clinicians to communicate with patients.
Trudy Harrison, MP for Copeland, Cumbria, said: “I am delighted that some care home residents in my constituency will be among the first to benefit from remote diagnostics consultations with their GPs.
“Tools such as Teki-Hub have the potential not only to reduce infection risk during the pandemic, but also to help deliver care to more patients more quickly and it is great to see more organisations trialling these innovations.”
The system was originally developed by two GPs to provide GP care in remote communities, but is now also being used to avoid risks of exposure during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The system is already in use in 18 care homes across England and Scotland and is being trialled in care homes in Staffordshire, Coventry, Wolverhampton and London.
GP Graham Crippin from Colne Valley Practice in Kirklees has been using the Teki-Hub system for virtual ward rounds and ad-hoc acute assessment since October 2020.
“Examination remains a vital part of the clinical assessment of a patient and, in the current pandemic, Tekihealth Solutions provides the tools to make a remote consultation as similar to a face-to-face consultation as is possible,” he said.
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