Home monitoring system launched

Elderly patients in Northern Ireland who suffer from potentially serious diseases can now benefit from a new healthcare system.

Quality Healthcare Group, a private healthcare provider, has launched a new monitoring service called Quality Healthcare at Home, which has been set up in collaboration with Honeywell HomMed, a US provider of Telehealth solutions.

The system guides patients through a series of health checks using pre-recorded messages to provide step-by-step instructions, the Belfast Telegraph reveals.

Information on weight, blood pressure, heart rate, blood glucose, oxygen saturation and peak flow is then sent to nursing staff via the patient's telephone line.

The system should help patients with illnesses such as diabetes and heart problems to look after themselves, while providing the reassurance that their health is being monitored on a regular basis.

The health sector is increasingly coming under pressure to improve efficiencies, according to Quality Healthcare Group's chairman, Brian O'Connor, who believes that the new system could help healthcare providers to meet requirements.

"Telehealth allows patients to return to the familiar surroundings of their own home quicker or to avoid hospital in the first instance, safe in the knowledge that their condition is being monitored," he explained.

A spokeswoman told the Belfast Telegraph that slight changes in healthcare status could be detected quickly and acted upon before problems escalate, as patients are monitored on a daily basis.

"For many patients this can result in fewer visits to hospital and helps patients to manage their disease instead of just coping with it," she added.

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