We restart our webinars after Easter Week with a panel of three contrasting suppliers of GP process improvement software and an AHSN expert on the topic, at 10am on Wednesday. In our first Webinar, huge potential benefits were identified from use of this software, which is particularly well suited to the requirement of the current pandemic that face:face consultations be avoided where possible.
However the benefits don’t stop there. Patients, clinicians and practice managers all benefit hugely. We’ll be exploring these benefits in more detail the following Wednesday 29th April in Webinar V when users – both professionals and patients – describe their experiences of the software, and the challenges implementing it.
Picking up on the theme of this webinar on Longevity and Covid.19 (for which slides and full recording are on our website), there’s a particularly interesting paper in the Gerotechnologist looking at how longevity is being sustained in the US with technology during the pandemic. It ends with the rhetorical question and answer: “So, can technology help older adults during the COVID-19 crisis? The short answer is yes. The long answer is – yes, but only if infrastructure, devices and training were put in place prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.” It’s packed with useful (US-centric) resources. It would be great if someone has, or will, produce the UK equivalent!
I now have Julian’s slide set though something is stopping me uploading it to the Webinar II page – I’ll speak to Telescope, who do a great job of managing our website, on Monday to ask for help. In the meantime, drop me an email if you need them quickly. Be sure to read the MDR item below, too.
We are just putting the finishing touches to Webinar VI on Wednesday 6th May which will be on the topic of technology to help people with disabilities during the lockdown. This will cover both physical and mental health. Webinar VII on 13th May looks likely to be on home testing to support remote patient management. Currently we’re looking at urine and blood self-test kits and mole checking. As always suggestions for inclusion from members are hugely welcomed.
And whilst we’re on Webinars, here’s a quick plug for the charity I chair that is dedicated to maximising digital inclusion, Citizens Online, which is now running weekly practical webinars on Thursdays to advise practitioners how to encourage full online usage across all areas – not just health. Book for the next one here.
- McDermott Will & Amery, a firm of American Lawyers, has produced an interest infographic and set of explanations entitled Digital Health and Covid19: a roadmap for successful implementation. I haven’t found an EU equivalent yet, perhaps in part because the FDA is able to be far more flexible in regulatory approval than its EU counterparts (see also below re the MDR).
- The EC has produced A European roadmap to lifting coronavirus containment measures. There’s nothing remarkable in it though it’s good to see it all together in one place (except, that is, a map where the UK is essentially ignored).
- The issue of people tracking to manage the Covid.19 pandemic remains a live debating issue in Europe, although Norway is pushing ahead, using Telenor’s mobile network. In California, there is a tracking trial using Oura smart rings. In the UK Google has been identifying park usage. In the US Covid.19 is being tracked by Google enquiries like “I can’t smell”. In Cork Hospital in Ireland there’s a Covid-19 Remote Early Warning System (CREW) that remotely identifies healthcare staff who may be developing a temperature, symptomatic of Covid-1 with a tiny Bluetooth thermometer under the armpit. Click here for the video
- Prof Mike Short kindly drew my attention to this paper (and other items in this newsletter that I’d missed), about how best to record number of coughs using a smart phone; he poses the critical question of where that data might go to, and for what purpose it might be used. And following on from this, there’s an AI-based app now with a reported 70% probability of detecting Covid.19 from the sound of that cough.
- DHACA alumnus Medopad has rebranded as Huma, acquiring one or two (depending on which article you read) UK medtech SMEs in the process and bringing in Alan Milburn as Chair. Huma’s website is clearly still a work in progress.
- The one year delay to the MDR cleared the EU parliament with 693 votes in favour, 1 against, and 2 abstentions. In now needs approval of all member states and OJEU publication before 26th May, the original enforcement date. Echoing the earlier comment, it makes you realise how much better served the US is with the FDA able to respond to circumstances so much faster.
I hope as many of you as possible can join us on Wednesday!