Remote monitoring solutions and virtual wards aim to remotely monitor patients to avoid unnecessary hospital admissions and escalate cases of deterioration at an earlier stage to provide timely interventions. This is in line with the NHS ambition to deliver 40 to 50 virtual beds per 100,000 population by December 2023, with £450 million funding made available to support this. It also supports the NHS ambition to reduce the environmental impact of healthcare services.
Over the last couple of years, we have worked in collaboration with NHS partners and innovators to help identify and implement solutions that could help improve patient care delivery and outcomes while supporting our healthcare colleagues to adopt effective remote monitoring and virtual wards solutions. You can find out more about our work in this area in our latest Impact Report
As part of our work, we have developed a series of resources to share best practice and useful steps to help implement remote monitoring and virtual wards solutions. We have broken down our journey and identified five key stages of implementation: Start, Engage, Deliver, Embed, Sustain.
To date we have published our resources covering the Start stage and the Engage stage that include guidance on topics such as the end-to-end implementation process, writing a business case, digital solution selection, setting up an evaluation and benefits measurement.
For the third in the series, ‘Deliver’, we are focusing on training, testing and IT set up.
Training is a vital part of the implementation process and should be tailored and delivered to all people involved in the virtual ward or remote monitoring pathway. This ensures that everyone is aware and informed on aspects such as the redesigned pathway, how to use any technology and devices to conduct examinations, how to record observation results and information on IT platforms, cleaning and infection control and the routes for raising any issues or queries.
We have highlighted some key steps to take into consideration when planning the training requirements and delivery in the infographic below.
Testing and IT set up are also key activities to be undertaken prior to going live. Testing ensures that the end-to-end process works as planned and designed. Comprehensive IT set up ensures a smooth, effective and safe experience for all involved, including patients, families, carers and staff. Our outline below includes considerations such as:
- What elements make up a comprehensive IT set up
- What aspects to include in User Acceptance Testing (UAT)
- Data considerations in testing environments
- How to determine when UAT is complete
We hope that you find these resources useful, but we are also keen to hear any feedback or queries you may have. Please feel free to contact Nicola Chicken at email@example.com