News, News in Brief

News in brief: Barts Health launches data analytics app, care homes pilot ‘proof of vaccination’ tech, Entrepreneur Academy for innovators

Health tech news never sleeps, so there are plenty of stories to catch up on for those lucky enough to have enjoyed a long weekend. From a £100,000 digital hub in the Midlands, a mental health ‘Recovery College’ in Cumbria, and care home vaccination ‘proof’ technology, through to the launch of a new Health and Social Care Entrepreneur Academy, it was a busy build-up to the Bank Holiday.

Find the stories you may have missed with our news in brief bites below…

Barts Health launches new data analytics application

Barts Health NHS Trust is launching a new analytics application for staff, powered by international software company Qlik.

The WeInform Application is being introduced across five hospitals and other sites, to provide access to real-time data to improve decision-making and delivery of patient care. Its aim is to ’empower its entire workforce’ to make more and better data-driven decisions.

Powered by the Qlik Sense data analytics platform, the app was created in response to data accessibility needs at the trust, offering insights relating to waiting list data, demand surges and healthcare trends, directly to users.

As well as patient data and an alerts system, population health analysis is also made accessible for health professionals, via a dashboard.

Barts, Health Qlik and partner, Catalyst BI, created the app within 10 months and it was tested and reviewed by staff during the development process.

“WeInform is a platform that aims to improve data literacy across Barts Health, giving staff access to reports from a single source of truth,” said Charles Guttergide, Chief Clinical Medical Officer at Barts Health. “WeInform will provide staff access to the data that they record at the point of care in our electronic health record, and so WeInform will become the engine for quality improvement and population health analysis.”

University Hospitals of North Midlands get £100k to develop Digital Hub

The University Hospitals of North Midlands (UHNM) NHS Trust is set to receive almost £100,000 to create a ‘state-of-the-art’ digital hub.

The Postgraduate Medical Centre (PGMC) at County Hospital, Stafford has been given a cash boost to upgrade its technology. This means staff from Royal Stoke University and County Hospitals will be able to access improved digital tools for learning and professional development.

The PGMC already has an Extended Reality Laboratory (ERL) for simulated learning, as well as a multimedia studio and inter-professional programmes to support the development needs of staff.

Dr Mark Poulson, Associate Medical Director for Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education, said: “The intention is to make the PGMC a cutting-edge Digital Hub and remote learning centre by using some of the latest technology on the market. It’s a connected approach and builds on the advances we have made with the ERL and Multimedia studio within the building, while keeping usability as a number one priority.”

Funding will come from the PGMC Charity and improvements will include the introduction of touchscreen computers and integrated audio with HD webcams and microphones.

£49k mental health ‘Recovery College’ to deliver online courses for North Cumbria

The Together We Community Interest Company (CIC) has been awarded a £49,000 grant by The SHINE Fund, the official charity of Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust (CNTW), to set up a new ‘Recovery College’ to support people’s mental health and wellbeing

The Recovery College is to be located in North Cumbria and will reportedly provide a programme of free courses and workshops to help people recover from mental health issues. The courses will also be developed and delivered by peers who have lived experience of mental illness.

Ken Jarrold CBE, Chair of the Council of Governors and Board of Directors at CNTW, said: “We are very pleased to be helping Together We CIC to set up a Recovery College for North Cumbria. Recovery Colleges are now a well-established model providing peer-led wellbeing support to people around the world and in much of the rest of the North East of England.

“At CNTW we know first-hand from our close links with Recovery Colleges in the North East how valuable they are as a complement to other mental health services. They increase people’s ability to stay well, and can be a launch pad into mainstream education, employment and re-connection with their community.”

The aim is for online courses to be delivered by May 2021, followed by in-person courses from July.

Psyomics launches mental health assessment platform

UK-based health tech company Psyomics’ mental health assessment platform, Censeo, is set to be trialled by two London GP practices.

The goal is to gather real-world data and feedback, prior to a commercial launch later this year. Built by psychiatrists, Censeo is intended to ‘mirror’ a face-to-face psychiatric assessment.

According to the company, it can guide a user through a series of adaptive questions and create a detailed and bespoke analysis ‘map’ of an individual’s mental health, to support healthcare professionals with effective diagnosis and treatment planning.

The digital assessment tool provides patients with a ‘stigma-free way’ to start addressing their mental health concerns and hopes to help clinicians manage patient health needs. Cholmley Gardens and Parchmore GP clinics have begun to offer Censeo to patients, with both trials expected to last at least three months.

Any GPs and practices interested in discussing Censeo can contact Psyomics for more information.

Entrepreneur Academy to support innovators across West Midlands

The Meridian Health and Social Care Entrepreneur Academy will launch in April 2021. It aims to support health and social care innovators across the West Midlands, through a range of activities and skills training.

Led by West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN) and supported by the Black Country and West Birmingham Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP), the new Academy will include a programme to identify entrepreneurs, develop their healthcare solutions and address current priorities in the West Midlands.

The Academy has two entry points, including an intensive, free boot camp and an ‘on-the-job’ development programme.

The boot camp allows attendees to explore entrepreneurship and develop transferable skills, and is open to all health and social care professionals within the Black Country and West Birmingham STP.

While an additional six-month, on-the-job workforce development programme will also provide professionals with commercial skills, knowledge and experience needed to successfully develop and share healthcare solutions.

Applications for the six-month programme opened on 1 April 2021 and are being managed through Meridian.

Registration for the boot camps, which take place in May, can be booked via Eventbrite.

Care home providers pilot ‘proof of vaccination’ technology

Care home providers in the UK are set to pilot technology that will provide ‘proof’ of COVID-19 vaccination.

Independent healthcare management app, myGP, is releasing a vaccine verification feature within its app next month. The myGP TICKet is to be trialled for use in care home settings and will enable anyone in England who is registered with a GP to communicate their vaccination status simply and securely, via a smartphone.

Barchester Healthcare and Lillian Faithful care homes will be piloting the tech, which displays vaccination status in real-time, generated directly from a patient’s NHS medical record. This will help the homes to better understand the vaccination status of their employees and, following the completion of the pilot, the myGP TICKet feature will be publicly available next month.

CliniSys Group creates single brand for UK and Europe 

CliniSys Group has created a single brand for its businesses in the UK and Europe, with a refreshed logo and a new website.

The move creates a unified identity for CliniSys in the UK and MIPS on the continent and, the group says, underlines its ‘commitment to providing end-to-end diagnostic systems to support safe and effective healthcare systems today’ and ‘drive medical innovation in the future’.

Chair and Chief Executive Michael Simpson, said: “Our combined cross-discipline expertise, spanning more than 40 years, provides our customers with solutions that span the diagnostic journey.

“From late March, we have a new look but our values remain steadfast, and we look forward to continuing to care for our customers while working with them on the innovative solutions that we will all need for the future.”

MyGlobalHome partners with Oxford Immune Algorithmics

MyGlobalHome has announced a new partnership with Oxford Immune Algorithmics (OIA), a Bio and MedTech company ‘incubated’ by the University of Oxford.

OIA’s flagship AI Medical Assistant product, Algocyte, will be integrated into MyGlobalHome’s ‘digital health ecosystem’, allowing users to complete personal blood tests remotely and access the results from home via a smart monitor.

By checking the number of red and white blood cells present, Algocyte will be able to alert users about up to 30 different diseases within just two days of taking a test, including leukaemia, sickle cell anaemia, and viral and bacterial infections such as sepsis.

Users will also be able to track test results over time and compare them to averages in the larger population, as well as their own ‘baseline’ health. OIA already works with the NHS, and users are encouraged to keep their GPs informed of their results via the platform.

Lee McCormack, CEO at MyGlobalHome, said: “Our vision for the future is that homes will look after their occupants – not the other way round. The integration of Algocyte is a vital step towards realising this vision, and we are absolutely delighted to be partnering with Oxford Immune Algorithmics on this project.”