Woman holding chest

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Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (HUTH) will be the first in England to implement a technology for remote monitoring of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

It has entered a partnership with Lenus Health to use the company’s COPD support service, which is already used by NHS Scotland health boards, to support virtual wards and provide specialist care and self-management tools to patients in their homes.

The company said it will also capture structured data to generate patient-specific health insights for clinicians, aimed at reducing hospital admissions through more timely interventions.

The agreement will support up to 1,000 patients remotely at any one time across the region in COPD and other cardio-respiratory conditions.

The move is expected to free up hospital beds for use by other patients at Hull Royal Infirmary and Castle Hill Hospital through early supported discharge or new admissions directly onto a respiratory virtual ward.

Patients at home

Joanne Thompson, respiratory matron and operational lead, said: “Nobody wants to be in hospital, and so the virtual ward option is something we’re really pleased to be able to offer to patients as it offers them the chance to stay at home with their families and loved ones but continue to be monitored by expert clinicians.

“By taking an integrated approach to remote monitoring and virtual wards, we can use technology to have better information on the health of our COPD patients and how it changes over time. With that, we can provide care that is more proactive and personalised to an individual patient’s needs, which stops them being admitted to hospital in the first place.”

The contract is supported by funding from the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) Healthcare, to generate further evidence of the clinical effectiveness of the monitoring elements of the service.

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