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What is exciting about telehealth & telecare?

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Norman Lamb (Minister of State for Care and Support, Department of Health):

Hello, I'm Norman Lamb, the Care Minister in the Department of Health. I just wanted to say a few words about the importance of telehealth and telecare from my point of view.

I'm a very strong believer in the whole concept of integrated care, shaping care around the needs of the individual citizen of the patient, rather than the needs of the institution, and technology is critical to that, and helping people care for themselves in their own home is also essential importance.

We now are starting to get the evidence of how powerful this can be, if we make the investment we can enable people to stay more independent for longer, enriching their lives, and also critically, ensuring the health system is more sustainable.

I'm a real enthusiast for this and I, determined while I'm in this job, to really drive it forward to make a difference for people. Thanks very much indeed.

Karen Middleton (Chief Allied Health Professions Officer, Department of Health):

Hello, I'm Karen Middleton, I'm the Chief Allied Health Professions Officer for England here at the Department of Health. I'm really excited about the whole 3millionlives agenda really from the patients perspective.

Having done a user consultation many years ago for people with severe physical disabilities and living with long-term conditions, I can really see how telehealth and telecare, and all assisted technology, can help people live more independent lives, that it can also mean they have greater control, better choices, and it means there's much less disruption for them and their families in terms of saving time attending clinics and hospital appointments, and it also means that we can anticipate much more problems going wrong rather than having to deal with crises after it's happened.

Lesley-Anne Baxter (British & Irish Orthoptic Society)

The move towards telehealth and telecare is exciting in a number of ways. If you think about what was available 3 or 4 years ago, nobody had i-phones or tablets, and now we're actually using them within social media.

So to be able to use that for patients that may have difficulty with compliance, with various treatments, to be able to text them, or to be able to skype them, or to be able to talk to them to say come on you can do this, to encourage them to make sure they are in charge of their own particular condition I think will be a huge move forward for both allied health professions and health care in general, to allow patients to take control of their own condition.

Paul Hitchcock (Director, Allied Health Professions Federation): -

Telehealth and Telecare are exciting because they are probably one of the key drivers for the paradigm shift that we need in the way that we look after patients and we deal with health and social care in this country.

In terms of creating a service and developing a service that is based around wellness as opposed to a service based around illness, it really puts the patient at the heart of their own care, and gives the clinician time to actually work as a clinician with those patients that really need their contact time, enabling them to have a greater spread I suppose is the way of describing it, or greater geographical range in dealing with those patients that absorb a great deal of their time and yet, could be considered as routine.

Angela Single (Chair of 3millionlives Industry Group): -

Telehealth and Telecare are exciting in the fact that I believe it can completely revolutionise the way we deliver health and care services, with traditionally thought about hospitals and patients going in and out of hospitals and perhaps inappropriately at times.

What we can do with telehealth and telecare is we can support people to be independent at home, we can support them to stay at home longer, we can support them to manage their own health and wellness, and we can also maximise the digital age.

What I believe in the healthcare system, is that we haven't digitalised the way that we deliver health and care as we have in so many other industries, so if we look at the banking industry, you can bank online at any time day or night, we need to be able to offer those kind of innovative and digital services  to patients and service users in their home.

Richard Evans (Society of Radiographers): -

For me the exciting thing about telecare and telehealth is that it actually puts the patient themselves, the member of the public, the user of the service, right in the centre of their own health care. I think this is the way by which were going to see health promotion in this country take off, when people can see their own health records, see the changes that their lifestyle can make to their health and the results that are being gained by interventions by health professionals and by their own choices and changes that they make.

Maria Luscombe (Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists): -

Telehealth and telecare offers us exciting opportunities to improve access to services, to improve access to information and to advice for our patients, and to improve access to therapy.

It will allow us to share information across professional boundaries with colleagues in educational and social care while also allowing us to share information  with patients and parents and carers, to improve outcomes.

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