Orion Health secures place on emerging tech framework



Orion Health has been listed on a new Crown Commercial Services framework to make it easier for health and care organisations to find and deploy cutting-edge technology.

The company has been included on the Spark: Technology Innovation Marketplace for its Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) solution, which enables care providers to create a personalised monitoring plan for people living with chronic conditions.

RPM is already being used by health and care systems internationally. Its flagship deployment by the Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services has been supporting patients with diabetes since 2015.

RPM is also being evaluated by Orion Health’s integrated digital care record customers in the UK, where it is being integrated with video conferencing platforms to build on the interest in remote care created during the coronavirus pandemic.

Orion Health product director Nicole Allan said: “Before the Covid-19 emergency, healthcare organisations were starting to explore how they could use RPM to reduce hospital visits for patients whose conditions were being well-managed, but who were still being called in for check-ups.

“Since Covid-19 arrived, we have seen a significant increase in interest, because it has become a priority to keep these patients safe at home, and to make sure they don’t have to travel into clinics unless that is absolutely necessary.

“The decision to include patient engagement technology on the Spark: Technology Innovation Marketplace is a recognition of the national attention that is being paid to developing digital first models of care as part of the NHS reset. The inclusion of RPM will make it much easier for health and care economies that want to move quickly on digital first strategies to adopt our proven solution.”

The Spark: Technology Innovation Marketplace has been established so health and care organisations can easily procure innovative technologies, including Internet of Things, wearables, simulated environments, and AI and automation.

It operates as a Dynamic Purchasing System, with search tools to help customers find relevant suppliers. Orion Health has been listed for Orion Health Remote Patient Monitoring, an engagement tool that sits on top of the Orion Health Amadeus platform and forms part of the Orion Health population health management stack.

RPM enables care providers to create a monitoring plan for individual patients that, unlike some early telehealth and monitoring tools, can take account of their circumstances.

For example, if RPM is being used to help a diabetes patient manage their blood glucose levels, and the patient has another condition that impacts on their normal range, the care plan can be adjusted to avoid triggering unnecessary alerts.

Once a plan is in place, patients can record vital signs, medications, routines and notes using any device with a web browser. The RPM algorithm will send advice or alerts to the patient and their clinical team according to the information submitted.

This technology enables healthcare providers to discharge appropriate patients sooner, making space for more critical patients and reducing the risk of hospital acquired infection. Resources can be maximised, with only patients presenting alerts requiring intervention from hospital staff. The patient is empowered as a contributor in the management of their healthcare and is able to benefit from more regular clinical guidance and education on how to manage their condition.

In Quebec, more than 3,000 people have been through the RPM programme, which has been shown to cut emergency department visits and the length of hospital stays, and extended from diabetes to patients living with other chronic diseases, such as COPD and heart failure.

The UK has seen a rapid roll-out of video consultation technology during the Covid-19 crisis, and many health and care organisations are now looking to integrate these with remote monitoring and engagement tools.

“We have seen an increase in requirement for video consultations, so we have built that into the RPM solution,” Nicole Allan said. “However, we recognise that many of our customers will already have a video conferencing platform, and we are working to integrate with their systems to create an effective toolset for them.”

In the UK, Orion Health has well established integrated digital care record customers who are using or about to go-live with its patient portal, Orion Health Engage.

These include the Northern Ireland Electronic Care Record, which has been trialling the portal with dementia patients and has recently extended its use to diabetes patients, and the Golden Jubilee
National Hospital in Scotland, which has been trialling the concept with patients in its adult congenital cardiac service and now has plans to expand on this user base including, but not limited to, Orthopaedic patients.

The Dorset Care Record is also working on rolling out Engage. It is widely recognised that care planning, remote monitoring and patient engagement form part of the direction of travel for mature programmes of this kind.

The patient data captured through both the Engage and RPM solutions is also a building block for population health. This data can be manipulated for purposes such as to analysing adherence to treatment plans, monitoring the success of condition-based education, keeping track of recovery over time and more.

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