5 ways we responded to the COVID-19 outbreak
We think healthcare is a communication industry. 50 years ago, healthcare was a lot simpler and could be delivered by individuals. Now a patient can be looked after by tens of staff, working for different organisations. We're building a platform where doctors, nurses, pharmacists, administrators, carers and anyone else involved in a patient's care can communicate easily with patients and with each other. We believe this will transform how healthcare is delivered by improving patient outcomes, improving staff morale and improving the efficiency of health systems.
The COVID-19 outbreak has increased the need for safe, reliable and intuitive communication products for health workers and patients. Our three aims in the current pandemic are:
- Keeping NHS staff and patients safe by minimising risk of infection
- Ensuring that NHS staff can continue to deliver safe, effective and responsive care to your patients for routine health needs
- Equipping NHS staff to move to remote working
Our team has been working continuously to develop new features to support healthcare staff. Over the past few months we’ve released the following new features:
1. Video calling from your mobile phone or computer
You can now conduct video consultations with patients using either your mobile phone or your desktop computer. An SMS will go to the patient with a link that directs them to the video consultation.
2. COVID-19 screening
In response to the recent Coronavirus outbreak, we've developed a COVID-19 screening Florey survey for practices to send to any patients who are visiting the surgery (e.g. regular appointments) to help them screen for any coronavirus warning signs. This should allow you to identify any at-risk patients and tell them not to come into the practice. We’re regularly updating the questions in this survey based on the NHS’s updated guidance.
3. Sending documents
GP practices can send documents (e.g. letters, leaflets, imaging request forms, fit notes) to patients electronically via SMS. Patients will receive a link in the SMS message, and then need to provide their DoB to access the document.
4. Allowing individual responses
All practices can allow patients to respond once to a message with the option of adding an image. This is off by default, but can be enabled for an individual message. The response notification will go back to the sender and all responses will be in a shared inbox (accessible by all) to prevent things being missed. There is also the option to request the patient to reply wi
5. SMS messaging and video consultation for hospital/community providers
We now have a web-based product that can be used by any NHS staff member to send a text message to a patient, or to conduct a video consultation. It uses the NHS Personal Demographic System (PDS). Unlike our desktop product, it does not link with a medical record system. It can be used on a mobile, desktop, or any device connected to the internet.
To all NHS staff - we continue to be amazed by the professionalism and patience that you show to your peers and patients in what must be incredibly challenging times. Thank you for all your hard work and commitment to keeping our population safe. Your dedication to your patients is truly inspiring and motivating to all of us here at accuRx. We're here to do what we can to help you as pressures increase over the next few months.
If there are more ways you think we can be helping, please let us know.