Primary Care News

iPLATO partners with Health Navigator

iPLATO Healthcare has announced a new partnership with Health Navigator, a leading health coaching service. The partnership will help iPLATO’s 15 million NHS patients across 1,650 GP practices in the UK access support and improve the management of their long-term health conditions.

The Proactive Health Coaching (PHC) programme provides patients with an average of 6 months tailored one-to-one health coaching from specialist NHS trained nurses. The aim being to improve patient confidence and knowledge in managing their long-term health conditions such as diabetes, coronary heart disease (CHD) and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) to ultimately improve their quality of life and reduce pressure on emergency services including A&E.

The Health Coaching concept has been developed to provide patients with long-term medical conditions the option to access high quality ‘holistic care’ out of the hospital setting. People with long-term conditions are the most frequent users of health care services, accounting for 50 per cent of all GP appointments and 70 per cent of all inpatient bed days1.

Statistics show that health coaching can have a significant impact on these unplanned hospital admissions, as well as a reduction in GP appointments and out-of-hour emergency calls. For patients, coaching increases their understanding of their conditions and motivates them to make key behavioural changes such as smoking cessation, medication compliance, adoption of regular exercise and a healthy lifestyle. It also signposts them other available support services when necessary.

In a trial programme this year with the NHS Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group the intervention group supported by Proactive Health Coaching had 20-40%% fewer non-elective admissions and 20-40% fewer A&E attendances 2. Thereby demonstrating that helping patients thrive in the presence of long-term diseases requires a paradigm shift in healthcare delivery models, ultimately moving to one that is empowering and increases patient activation, confidence and healthy behaviours to improve outcomes and reduce the UK’s spiralling healthcare costs. This need is echoed in the NHS Five Year Forward View which highlights that ‘long-term conditions are now a central task of the NHS’.

Joachim Werr founder of Health Navigator and A&E practitioner comments: “By combining technology, advanced data analysis and high-quality nursing we can prevent almost every second unplanned care event for the most vulnerable patients. Most of all this service will benefit patients receiving their care through planned primary and community care as well increased as self-care instead of acute care. Our collaboration with iPLATO will enhance the quality and accessibility of the PHC service and should be of interest for any health economy trying to shift unplanned hospital care to planned out of hospital care”