News in Brief

News in brief: HydroBubble device for children with cystic fibrosis in South Warwickshire, Shrewsbury and Telford hospitals transformation programme approval, and more

Join us for our latest news in brief, where we take a look at some of the health tech news to have caught our eye over the last few weeks.

New radiotherapy tech at University Hospital Southampton to help treat patients with cancer and other conditions

University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust has rolled-out Surface Guided Radiation Therapy (SGRT), “a cutting-edge technique which uses high-tech cameras and sensors to track the contours of a patient’s skin and produce a unique map of the surface of their body”, to help treat patients with cancer and other conditions.

Combined with X-ray, it’s hoped that the new technology will assist clinicians in determining the precise position and location requiring radiation treatment, with the equipment automatically shutting off if it detects “movement by even a fraction of a millimetre”.

Using the ExacTrac Dynamic system made by Brain Lab, and the Align RT system made by Vision RT, the trust is hoping to replace previous methods of planning and delivering radiology treatment.

The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust receives national approval for Hospitals Transformation Programme

The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust has received national approval of its full business case for the Hospitals Transformation Programme, releasing an investment of £312 million in local services, and paving the way for implementation.

This investment will help to support the trust’s ambitions of delivering “high quality, sustainable services for patients in modern facilities”, with hopes of providing faster access to the right care, shorter hospital stays, and improved patient experience.

HydroBubble device supports children with cystic fibrosis in South Warwickshire

A new device is helping to support children with cystic fibrosis in South Warwickshire, thanks to a partnership between the Cystic Fibrosis Team from South Warwickshire University NHS Foundation Trust and University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, in collaboration with Hydrate for Health.

The HydroBubble device aims to provide a “more sustainable and cost-effective” way of delivering Bubble PEP (Positive Expiratory Pressure) for chest physiotherapy, working to keep airways open by producing vibrations in the lungs which help to loosen and move secretions, potentially reducing the chance of infection.

As well as offering financial savings, the device is said to be entirely reusable, which the trust hopes will help towards its commitment tot achieving net zero emissions, “significantly reducing waste and environmental impact”.

South East Coast Ambulance Service trials fully-electric vehicles to help cut carbon emissions

Three fully-electric vehicles are being trialled by South East Coast Ambulance Service, as part of NHSE’s Zero Emission Electric Vehicle (ZEEV) Pathfinder project, and to help the trust achieve its aims of reducing its emissions by 50 percent by 2032, and reaching net zero by 2040.

With its fleet being responsible for around 63 percent of its total emissions, the cars are a part of a wider plan which will also see energy measures implemented such as moving to solar photovoltaic and battery storage, installing retrofit double glazing, and using “more efficient” LED lighting.

New cardiac 3d mapping and navigation platform launched to help improve patient outcomes at Royal Papworth

Royal Papworth hospital has performed its first ablation procedure using a new cardiac 3d mapping and navigating platform, designed to help improve patient outcomes and efficiency.

The Medtronic system uses pulsed field ablation, radiofrequency and a high-density single catheter, the Sphere-9, which “maps and ablates fast, abnormal heart rhythms and provides real-time feedback through its mapping and navigation software”.

Dr Claire Martin, consultant cardiologist, talked about how the new technology would help “really tailor each patient’s care respectively”, saying: “Using this system means the ablation process is simplified by having just one catheter that can provide both high density mapping and ablation, instead of having to switch between two different catheters. It also has a high degree of flexibility in being designed for both treatment of the pulmonary veins and flutter rhythms, which often accompany atrial fibrillation, meaning patients can be treated for both.”

Laser device offers “less invasive” way of treating bladder tumours at Somerset NHS Foundation Trust

Urology consultants at Somerset NHS Foundation Trust are using a portable handheld laser device to treat small bladder cancer tumours, enabling them to complete the treatment in a “far less invasive way”, and supporting patients to return home on the same day.

Trans Urethral Laser Ablation (TULA) was first introduced at Yeovil District Hospital last year and is now established at Musgrove Park Hospital.

Dr Sanjit Das, laser treatment lead and urology consultant at Yeovil District Hospital, said: “If a tumour is detected, then the laser is used to completely remove any abnormal tissue and stop any bleeding. The laser fibre is extremely thin, and the procedure takes between 10 and 20 minutes. Following the treatment, patients will receive a single dose of antibiotics and be sent home the same day – a significant change from the previous arrangement.”