Scottish Telehealth and Telecare Week – October 28 to November 1 2013

A WEEK of events showcasing  the innovative and valuable work of telehealth and telecare will take place in Scotland next month (October) and will feature key presentations from the Scottish dallas project, Living it Up.

The Scottish Telehealth and Telecare Week, which runs from October 28 to November 1, is being organised by the Scottish Centre for Telehealth and Telecare (SCTT) and the Scottish Government’s Joint Improvement Team (JIT) with involvement from telehealth and telecare organisations from around the world.

The week commences with the formal launch of Scotland’s new innovation centre for   digital health, the Digital Health Institute (DHI) on October 28. The Digital Health Institute is a collaboration between Scotland’s leading academic institutions, the public sector and industry, to foster innovation, generate economic growth as well as delivering innovative services and products to benefit the people of Scotland.

The inaugural European Telemedicine Conference, on October 29 and 30, will focus on all aspects of telemedicine – telehealth, telecare, e-health and m-health.. The event is being organised by SCTT and Healthcare Information Management and Systems Society (HIMSS) Europe and will feature experts in telemedicine from the USA, Spain, Norway as well as the UK. The Scottish conference sessions will focus on technologies that support an individual throughout their life stages – childhood, midlife and older age and will feature a key presentation from the Scottish dallas project, Living it Up.

Day Two of the conference will feature a European Innovation Showcase with live demonstrations of emerging health, care and mobile technologies. It will also incorporate a series of panel debates on innovation as well as ‘Dragon’s Den’ style   sessions which offer SMEs and start-ups the opportunity to pitch their new ideas to a panel of industry leaders including IBM, Samsung, Deutche Telekom and Atos.

An event for members of the public, including carers, is being held on Thursday 31st October at Hampden Football Stadium in Glasgow. This event will help raise awareness of new developments and enable participants to try out available technologies.  The Living it Up project will also be making a key presentation at this event.

SCTT’s Medical Director Professor George Crooks said: “We are very proud of the progress we have made in Scotland in implementing at-scale telehealth and telecare services.  This has been achieved through a strong strategic commitment from the Scottish Government, NHS Boards, local authorities, third sector and industry partners to delivering on this important agenda.

“We are therefore delighted to be host country for this inaugural European Telemedicine Conference which will showcase best practice in telehealth and telecare from across Europe. We would encourage health, care and housing providers involved in telehealth and telecare in Scotland to get involved in the Scottish Telehealth and Telecare Week to help highlight the excellent work going on that is delivering real benefits to people in this country.”

For further information and to register for the conference and showcase programme, please visit

For more information on the Scottish Telehealth and Telecare Week, visit the SCTT Facebook page or the JIT website

Healthcare: The great hope of tablet computing

by Keith Andrews June 17 2013, 5:45 am
healthcare tablet
80 percent of doctors expected eventually to be using some sort of tablet-like device in their practice.

Doctors are now trading clipboards for powerful new tablets. As Apple, Google and other major providers are releasing new devices, the industry continues to grow.

When these devices give way to the next generation of instruments (Google Glass?), tablet computing will have developed a healthy relationship in the healthcare sector. They’re compact, portable and have all the basic computing functions on which doctors rely on.

Why doctors love tablets

Citing an article from, 62 percent of doctors in America now use tablet computers. The article also claims that most prefer the iPad, but many use a variety of other mobile devices in the workplace, as well.

One of the reasons doctors love tablets is the versatility of the device. At work, they can be used to access radiographic images, patient reports, and other essential information. Their graphical capabilities make it easy to see images in high detail and point things out to patients.

EHR (electronic health record) software allows physicians to access all relevant information with just a touch. This software doesn’t actually run on tablets – instead, it’s based on a different computer and simply allows the tablet to access it, according to

After the workday ends, tablets are still useful for doctors. By now, app developers have created tablet utility in almost every aspect of life. Just like users from the general public, physicians can create a presentation on a tablet at work, and use the device as a cable TV guide with the DirecTV app at home.

Read the rest of article Healthcare: The great hope of tablet computing here

Smartphone app for NHS doctors gets funding

3:28PM BST 15 May 2013

SmartWard, the winner of a Telegraph competition for innovative mobile apps, has been awarded £50,000 by Seedcamp, a leading technology venture capital fund.

The smartphone and tablet app is designed to improve care in hospitals by digitising patient notes and alerting staff when to administer medicines and check vital measurements. It aims to reduce human error by reducing the chance of notes being lost or tasks being forgotten on wards when shifts change.
The new funding will allow Dr Michelle Teo, co-founder and chief executive of SmartWard, who currently works on an NHS cancer ward in Nottingham. She will to relocate to London and take charge of development of the software full time at Google Campus, an office space in Shoreditch owned by the web search giant.
“It’s really exciting,” she said. “The next step is to get a beta version up and running in about three months then we have to find more funding.”
SmartWard is already in talks to trial its software at an NHS hospital in Leicester.
The concept for the software and the team behind it came together at a weekend hosted by Telegraph Media Group in November as part of the Silicon Valley Comes to the UK series of entrepreneurial events. SmartWard came out top in the competition and received help turning the idea into a business, as well as introductions to investment bankers that led to the Seedcamp funding.

Seedcamp is a European “accelerator” fund founded by the Index Venures partner Saul Klein that offers cash and intensive mentoring to early-stage technology start-ups. Its British successes include Crashpadder, which was acquired by the room rentals service Airbnb last year, and Mobclix, a mobile advertising start-up sold to Velti for more than $50m in 2010.
“SmartWardApp has the potential to revolutionise patient care in hospitals,” said Edward Roussel, Telegraph Media Group’s executive editor, digital.
“It’s been exciting to watch the idea incubate in the Telegraph’s offices and then mature in just six months into a business that has impressed investors of the calibre of Seedcamp.”

£2.8m scheme for better health care at home


TWO multi-million, technological health pro- grammes have been launched officially to help deliver better healthcare in people’s homes.

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing Alex Neil MSP unveiled the two Telehealth and Telecare programmes, worth £2.8million, when he visited an East Ayrshire monitoring station within the council.

The programmes are being jointly funded by the European Commission and the Scottish Government and are part of the Digital Health and Care Innova-tion Partnership aimed at using new technologies to support people with disabilities and/or health conditions in their homes or communities.

Mr Neil said: “These projects are a fantastic example of how using innovative technologies as part of effective service redesign can enable people to be treated as close to home as possible and reduce the need for hospital admissions.

“Scotland has already made significant pro-gress on developing and expanding new technologies, and by delivering these two projects across the same geographical area will enable us to expand even further the role technology plays in supporting 21st century healthcare.”

Called United4Health and SmartCare, the three-year programmes will operate within seven local health and care partnerships across Ayrshire & Arran, East Renfrewshire, Renfrewshire and Clyde Valley.

The United4Health programme will give patients living with diabetes, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease or heart failure a central role in the management of their condition through home-based mon- itoring of the patient’s health and wellbeing.

The SmartCare programme will link service provision across health, social care, family, informal carers and the voluntary sector but using technology to support the health, care and wellbeing for the over 50s with a specific focus on falls prevention and dementia care.

Full article here

Worms detected by converted iPhone microscope

Improvised iPhone microscope

Scientists used an iPhone 4S to diagnose intestinal worm infections in schoolchildren in rural Tanzania.

They attached an $8 (£5) ball lens to the handset camera lens, and used a cheap torch and double-sided tape to create an improvised microscope.

Pictures were then taken of stool samples placed on lab slides, wrapped in cellophane and taped to the phone.

They were studied for the presence of eggs, the main sign of the presence of the parasites.

When the results were double-checked with a laboratory light microscope, the device had managed to pick up 70% of the samples with infections present – and 90% of the heavier infections.

The study has been published this week in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

Researcher Dr Isaac Bogoch, who specialises in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Toronto General Hospital, told the BBC he had read about smartphone microscopes being trialled in a laboratory and decided to “recreate it in a real world setting”.

“Ultimately we’d like something like this to be a useful diagnostic test. We want to put it in the hands of someone who might be able to use it,” he said.

“70% (accuracy) isn’t really good enough, we want to be above 80% and we’re not quite there yet,” he added.

“The technology is out there. We want to use materials that are affordable and easy to procure.”

Continue reading the main story

Argyll launches new range of personal safety smartphone applications

By on January 31, 2013

ARGYLL, the UK’s leading provider of safeguarding services
ARGYLL, the UK’s leading provider of safeguarding services

ARGYLL, the UK’s leading provider of safeguarding services, today announced the launch of Companion, one of a new range of personal safety applications for Smartphones.

The app, which is the first of its kind on the market, converts compatible smartphones into a fully functioning personal safety solution with a dedicated SOS button.

Companion is complemented by SmartClip, a body worn clip-on accessory that looks like a simple hands-free or MP3 device but is in actual fact a discreet SOS button, connected to the smartphone via Bluetooth.

A user can trigger their Companion alarm by pressing a concealed button on the SmartClip hands-free device, which will automatically connect their smartphone to Argyll’s alarm receiving centre (ARC).

Glasgow City Mission, which runs a Winter Night Shelter for vulnerable and homeless adults, is one of the early adopters of the solution. Mitchum Bock, night shelter manager, said: “The app and device has to be simple, reliable and easy to use since it was used every night over the past two months by our staff, who must be prepared when confronted by violence, aggression and other emergency situations.”

Mitchum continued: “The operator within the ARC can listen to the situation and is able to speak discreetly, and without the aggressor’s knowledge, with our staff using the hands-free capability. The user is guaranteed police assistance if it is required and Companion will pinpoint the person using the app to within metres of their location.”

Tom Morton, founder and CEO of Argyll, which is based in Dunoon, Scotland, said he hoped the app would enable businesses to integrate vital lone worker safety services within mainstream business equipment and processes.

He said: “I’m delighted that the workers at Glasgow City Mission’s Winter Night Shelter chose to place their faith in our safeguarding solution.

“Traditional lone worker devices can be an expensive option to deploy and operate; by contrast the more cost-effective mobile phone options can become unsuitable for some business processes, Companion fills the current gap in the delivery of safeguarding solutions.

“Most businesses are already using or considering the deployment of smartphones; using the Companion app gives employers the chance to sweat their existing mobile assets, so all that is required is for that smartphone to be configured with the app and they are well on their way to satisfying their duty of care and without the need to purchase expensive lone worker devices and duplicate costs using associated sim cards. And fundamentally, the app will not drain battery life on your smartphone.”

Companion is the first in a new series of cost effective and modular apps for the smartphone market. It delivers tangible benefits and the use of an existing smartphone means that employers can save money without compromising on employee safety.

The app can be used independently of the SmartClip device, and will elicit the same response as the clip by pressing the power button on your handset three times. The SmartClip device operates in conjunction with your Companion smartphone application, over a range of up to 30m. It provides end users with discreet reassurance and a method for summoning assistance; opening a 2-way communications link to the nominated response centre.

Argyll Lone Worker Solutions

Link to original article

Smartphone Technology Acceptable for Telemedicine, Mayo Clinic Study Confirms

Monday, October 01, 2012

PHOENIX — A new Mayo Clinic study confirms the use of smartphones medical images to evaluate stroke patients in remote locations through telemedicine. The study, the first to test the effectiveness of smartphone teleradiology applications in a real-world telestroke network, was recently published in Stroke, a journal of the American Heart Association.


“Essentially what this means is that telemedicine can fit in our pockets,” says Bart Demaerschalk, M.D., professor of Neurology, and medical director of Mayo Clinic Telestroke. “For patients this means access to expertise in a timely fashion when they need it most, no matter what emergency room they may find themselves.”


Click here for a video of Dr. Demaerschalk talking about the study.


Mayo Clinic was the first medical center in Arizona to do pioneering clinical research to study telemedicine to serve patients with stroke in non-urban settings. Today, Mayo Clinic is the hub in a network of 12 other spoke centers, all but one in Arizona. In telestroke care, the use of telemedicine platforms or robots located in a rural hospital lets a stroke patient be seen in real time by a neurology specialist who typically is working from a desktop or laptop computer in Phoenix. The Mayo Clinic stroke neurologist, whose face appears on a computer screen, consults with emergency room physicians at the rural sites and evaluates the patient.


Patients showing signs of stroke can be examined by the neurologist who can also view scans of the patient’s brain to detect possible damage from a hemorrhage or blocked artery. If necessary patients can be administered clot-busting medications within the narrow window of time necessary to minimize permanent injury to the brain.The study compared the quality of medical images using a particular smartphone application to the same types of information and images typically viewed via desktop computers. Mayo Clinic neurologists worked with emergency physicians and radiologists at Yuma Regional Medical Center to compare brain scan images from 53 patients who came to that medical center with stroke.


The scans were reviewed by radiologists in Yuma and a separate adjudication panel of stroke neurologists to determine the level of agreement between these traditional interpretation routes and new images and scans on smartphones interpreted by telestroke doctors. The study shows there was a high level of agreement (92 to 100 percent) among all the reviewers over the most important radiological features.


“Smartphones are ubiquitous, they are everywhere,” Dr. Demaerschalk says. “If we can transmit health information securely and simultaneously use the video conferencing capabilities for clinical assessments, we can have telemedicine anywhere, which is essential in a state like Arizona where more than 40 percent of the population doesn’t have access to immediate neurologic care.”


The study was funded by the Arizona Department of Health Services and the technology and technical assistance was provided by Calgary Scientific, the maker of ResolutionMD.


The Mayo Clinic Telestroke Network includes hospitals in Kingman, Flagstaff, Parker, Cottonwood, Show Low, Globe, Yuma, Bisbee, Casa Grande, Tuba City and Phoenix, all in Arizona; and a hospital in St. Joseph, Mo. To date, more than 1,000 emergency consultations have taken place for stroke between Mayo Clinic stroke neurologists and physicians at the spoke centers. Such comprehensive evaluation techniques lead to appropriate life-saving treatment for stroke, and have resulted in significant cost reductions by not requiring ground or air ambulance transfer of the patient to another medical center.

LAUNCH OF THE EUROPEAN DIRECTORY OF HEALTH APPS -A review by patient groups and empowered consumers

Foreword by Robert Madelin, Director General, DG CONNECT
Launched at the media partner’s event, European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG) 2012
In partnership with: How are you?; GSK; Novo Nordisk; and SanofiA full copy of the European Directory of Health Apps can be downloaded from
As of Oct 3rd 2012, the European Directory of Health Apps will be available in the public domain on the PatientView website:


The European Directory of Health Apps 2012-2013 is the first-ever directory of its kind. It contains key facts on 200 health-oriented apps that are all recommended by patient groups and empowered consumers.The 200 apps are also categorised in the Directoryaccording to the service they provide the patient/consumer, and according to the language/s in which the apps are available.*Special effort was made in include apps devised by patient groups and other consumer organisations

Each app has a one-page entry in the Directory, containing the actual patient group/consumer recommendation/s, the cost of the the app, its developer/s (including some brief details about the developer/s), and the weblinks from which the app can be downloaded. Information and references are hyperlinked in the online PDF version of the Directory, to enable easy access.*All information in the Directory ireferenced and can be downloaded
WIDE RANGING AND IN MANY LANGUAGESThe variety and the international remit of the 200 patient/consumer apps in the Directory is impressive. PatientView has identified apps in 62 very-different health specialties. Until recently, most apps have been the creation of US developers. But PatientView has found that European developers of health apps are quickly catching up—the apps in the Directory are available in as many as 32 different European languages.
Click on links below for :Chart on specialties in the European Directory of Health Apps. Title of chart is “Number of apps for the following medical specialties/conditions in the European Directory of Health Apps.” on languages in the European Directory of Health Apps: Ttle of chart is “Number of apps in the following languages in the European Directory of Health Apps”

HEALTH APPS REPRESENT A NEW AND POTENT ‘E-TOOL’Health apps are capable of helping patients to self-manage their medical conditions round the clock. Apps provide support for patients (whether at home, at the doctor’s office, at hospital, at work, or travelling/on holiday), and cater for a wide range of their healthcare needs. Health apps can even be invaluable for patients and members of the public who are traditionally hard for national healthcare systems to reach—such as homeless people.
SOME CASE STUDIES A few examples of the types of apps in the Directory are mentioned below:

• Apps that support self-management of a medical condition. U-Turn, developed in Northern Ireland, is an app to help people addicted to opiate drugs. The app advises the user on how to recognise the symptoms of an opiate overdose. The Scotland-based NGO that recommended the app, the Scottish Drugs Forum (SDF), describes it as “an excellent naloxone training aid and resource”. The app is available in English.• Apps that allow patients to report adverse events. Fodspor [Footprints] was developed by a Denmark-based patient group specialising in patient safety, the Dansk Selskab for Patientsikkerhed, to “make it possible for patients and relatives to write their own hospital experience ‘footprints’ on the phone.” Patient comments about their experiences are emailed to hospital managers, who gain unbiased, truthful accounts of patients’ experiences of care in the managers’ hospitals. Available in Danish.• Apps that support the homeless. UK charity, the Amber Foundation, commissioned its Amber Homeless Helper app to provide young homeless people throughout the UK with information on the many local services available to them. The Devon-based local NGO that recommended the app, Young People’s Housing Advice, says that the app “is designed to provide as much information as possible to help people find the right support.” Available in English.
• Apps to support patients when they travel. ICE 112 is an app developed in Iceland that utilises a smartphone’s GPS system to enable the user to be tracked while they are travelling. The app alerts the emergency services if the traveller is in trouble. 112 is the EU-wide emergency number, and this app is recognised by the Belgium-based European Emergency Number Association (EENA). The app is available in English and Icelandic. Such apps are invaluable for people living with a chronic condition, giving them the confidence to go abroad. A similar approach is utilised by an award-winning app developed in Portugal, AlzNav. The app is intended to help guide people with dementia back to their home, and will call for help if the user becomes lost or disoriented. The app is available in English. Wheelmap, winner of the Smart Accessibility Awards 2011, helps people with impaired mobility: thanks to crowdsourcing it lets users of the application rate the accessibility for wheelchair users of public places”.  The app is available in English, German and Japanese.

• Apps that support the clinical-trial process. Developed by Stephane Dufau of the University of Aix-Marselle, France, Dys is a learning tool for children with dyslexia, and also comprises part of a scientific programme at the University. Users e-mail their responses to the app, giving scientists insights into the letter spacing that will most help children with dyslexia to read. The French health NGO that recommended the app, ANAPEDYS [National Association of Associations of Parents of Children with Dyslexia], hopes “that this study, and the app, will bring real results for people with dyslexia.” The app is available in English and French.

NEED FOR SOME SCRUTINY The importance of the European Directory of Health Apps lies not just in its categorisation of health apps, but also in its reviews of the apps. As Robert Madelin, Director General of the European Commission’s DG CONNECT, notes in his foreword to the Directory:“From DG CONNECT’s perspective, consumers and patients need guidance and support in finding useful and reliable apps. Scrutiny of these apps by informed users (such as empowered citizens and patient groups) could be one way forward. I am certain that this Directory will prove useful, not only to users of healthcare systems throughout Europe, but to the many European citizens who live or strive to live healthy lives as well as for everybody who needs such information in their everyday work.”

FUTURE PLANS PatientView hopes to expand on this initial exercise in collating patient perspectives on health apps by increasing the number of apps and international scope it covers. PatientView will also shortly post on its website a link to an online survey in which developers of health apps can leave details of the apps they have created—if they want these apps reviewed by patient groups or empowered consumers. (All entries will be treated seriously, and every developer will get a reply about the outcome of the review process.) Finally, PatientView would also welcome the opinions of health professionals on the subject of health apps that help patients self-manage their medical conditions. Even apps are, in the end, no real substitute for proper clinical care. They are, though, an important healthcare tool, providing support to patients and public—a point that patient groups and empowered consumers are already emphasising.


About PatientView
Views of patients should be considered in all important healthcare decisions (whether a new healthcare product is being developed, or whether a government is instituting changes to a healthcare system). PatientView was formed in response to the emerging powerful new global patient movement. PatientView has worked to build bridges worldwide with the health NGOs that comprise the patient movement, to help define and support one of the most important phenomenon changing healthcare in the 21st Century. Today PatientView has the capacity to reach out to 120,000 such groups (covering over 1,000 specialties, and from most countries in the world). The patient movement grows continually in numbers and scale of influence.

Health Informatics Scotland sold out

Health Informatics Scotland sold out – our conference in Glasgow next week is now sold out with over 330 attendees expected.  Never fear you can watch and participate live online via our virtual conference environment (firewalls and security permitting).

You can visit it at

where after registration you can setup your avatar and try out walking around the virtual world.  On the days of the conference it will be fully live where you can meet and talk to people and watch live online presentations.

Paul Woolman

Chair Health Informatics Scotland


2012 Scottish eHealth Awards – Shortlist Announced

  • Best NHS Scotland use of innovative IT for patient care

This award goes to the NHS Scotland team demonstrating the most innovative product in use within a clinical setting for direct patient care.  The product maybe entirely new or a radical redesign of something existing.  The Judges were looking for something proven to work in a health board clinical setting, though it may be a pilot stage, and demonstrably bringing benefits to patients.


  • Pilot PatientTrack Electronic early warning scores; with Track and Trigger (NHS Fife, Ronnie Monaghan)
  • The Learning Arcade (NHS Fife, Norma Clark)
  • Access for All – Delivery of the Healthy Outlook health forecasting service in Moray (Moray Community Health & Social Care Partnership, Lorna Bernard)


  • Best NHS Scotland IT service delivery team

This award went  to the NHS Scotland team with an excellent record of delivering services that improve clinicians working lives, enhance patient care and increase efficiency in their own NHS Scotland board.  Entrants were judged on evidence of their record, effectiveness of communications to and within their own board clinicians, success in engaging other colleagues across the wider NHS, evidence of fulfilment of service agreements, and lastly examples of service ‘above and beyond the norm’.


  • Migration of all NHSFV Acute & Mental Health Services to new-build acute site (NHS Forth Valley, Ann Crowe)
  • Implementation of ISO27001 (NHS Fife, Donald Wilson)
  • SCI-Diabetes Collaboration (NHS Tayside, Scott Cunningham)


  •  Best NHS Scotland use of Mobile technology in NHS Scotland

This award went to the NHS Scotland team demonstrating best use of mobile technology that helps improve the ways in which clinicians work and the benefits and improvements to patient care. Judges were looking for evidence of benefits they are achieving (eg reduction in errors, savings to the board, improvements to working practices).


  • Patient Safety – Hospital@ Night Safe Hand (NHS Dumfries & Galloway, Graham Gault)
  • EMRS iOS Apps – (Emergency Medical Retrieval Service, Dr Dave McKean)
  • NHS Scotland Digital Television and Mobile Service (NHS 24, Lynne Huckerby)


The awards will be presented at the Health Informatics Scotland Conference 2012 in Glasgow on the 21st of September 2012. You can find out more information at