Yeovil District Hospital is using MeetingZone UC technology to improve collaboration between GPs, hospitals and community care.
One of a select group of NHS Foundation Trusts to be granted Vanguard status by the Government, the hospital is pioneering new ways of using collaboration technology to improve staff communication and deliver remote patient care.
A priority is to join up patient care for sufferers of multiple long-term conditions, who often need to see a number of specialists in a variety of departments, resulting in multiple appointments with GPs and consultants.
MeetingZone is deploying a Microsoft Skype for Business solution that brings together video and voice conferencing, instant messaging, file
sharing and ‘presence’ so that staff can engage with one another and with patients, irrespective of where they are or whether they are using a PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone.
Yeovil chief technology officer Richard Hale said: “The inability to share information can be a big barrier to implementing change. So the breaking down of silos which prevent individual departments from collaborating effectively with one another is key to this project.”
MeetingZone will also support the development of south Somerset’s Symphony Care Hubs, which help patients with multiple long-term conditions take greater control over their health.
Skype for Business will enable a case worker for a Symphony patient to see instantly whether a particular consultant is available to talk and contact them directly, rather than having to leave phone or email messages.
The Trust also plans to use video-conferencing on iPads to enable GPs, Symphony staff and patients to conduct ‘virtual’ consultations that will reduce the need for travel and enable it to deal with more patients.
Andy Clark, General Manager of Lync/Skype for Business at MeetingZone, said: “Better, simpler collaboration and communication is vital when it comes to making the urgent improvements to patient care, productivity and cost efficiency that will be necessary for the continued success of our NHS.”