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Revolutionary online healthcare system offers pioneering ‘Telehealth’ solution to world’s most rural village

01/04/2010
A revolutionary online health service, developed in Hull, has been used to deliver pioneering 'telehealth solutions' to residents living in the remote village of Gerkhutar in Nepal - one of the world's most rural areas

Developed by UK based Meddserve, the system called Medsystem and Medrecord Online offers local resident the opportunity to have in-depth consultations with healthcare specialists who are based 65km away - a journey which would normally take a villager and their family 2 days journey across mountainous terrain.

The technology was piloted in the village using only a basic computer and dial up internet connection, set up in a temporary healthcare clinic in the local community centre but can be used in any hospital, anywhere in the world.

Local residents spoke confidentially to a nominated 'healthcare representative' giving detail about their symptoms and general examination data like height weight, blood pressure and their Body Mass Index (BMI). Patients were also able to mark on a 3D body image unusual injuries or where they were experiencing pain or discomfort. Pictures were then uploaded to the Medrecord online and a referral then made to the specialist.

The data was then accessed by a consultant in Kathmandu, using a secure log in, who used the information to give diagnosis and advise treatment.

The system mirrors that of a full medical consultation, using standard symptom screens that are normally used by doctors to screen for diseases. Being 'online' also means that this type of telehealth consultation is available to anyone who has access to the internet, wherever they are in the world.

The technology has also been designed to include an integrated hospital management system, which is set to improve the day to day running of healthcare establishments and the way patient information is stored and accessed.

'Gerkhutar is not easily accessible by car so it was the perfect location to trial telehealth services,' said Dr James Britton, a Consultant in Dermatology at the Spire Hull and East Riding Hospital, who developed the online system.
'We have been working on this technology for 10 years and, we believe, it is the most advanced system in the world. It ensures that everyone, no matter where they live has access to healthcare services and because it is delivered through the internet it means it can be used to benefit 80% of Nepal's population that live in rural areas. '
Mr Krishna Pandey from the Nepal High Commission for Information Technology, who carried out the pilot, said "The villagers were extremely excited to see such a reliable and easy system on their desktop, from which they could get help regarding all the health services. The first villager who registered for the service said it was like a senior surgeon was infront of them having a consultation, which was excellent feedback regarding the service."

As well as being a Consultant, Dr James Britton also has a background in designing IT systems for genetic research and this technology has been able to combine both of his specialisms to work closely with Mr Bala the technical director of Meddserve Ltd, who heads the technical team.

Combing his clinical experience and his understanding of patients needs, Meddserve has developed a system that has very low set up and running costs and can be easily integrated to hospitals around the world. It is easy to use, offers 100% data protection uses technology that currently is not being used within the healthcare world.
Since the successful pilot of the technology, the Nepal Government want to roll the technology across the country and have already earmarked two more villages where the technology will be used. Plans are currently in place to start these pilots in April.
Dr Britton will be speaking about the technology and the project at an Innovation in Primary and Community Care Conference, being held at The Queens Hotel, in Leeds on 24 March.
To book your free place at the event email Nikola Alevizos at n.alevizos@medilink.co.uk |

For more information visit
www.meddserve.com |


Based in Hull, Meddserve is dedicated to empowering individuals to improve and maintain their health by recording their own medical information online. The company is dedicated solely to developing, hosting and maintaining its very advanced Internet health provision applications, Medsystem online and Medrecord online.

Medsystem online - The Medsystem online service runs the functions of a hospital such as patient appointments, shift patterns, patient's results such as blood tests, fully integrated PACS (X-rays, scans ultrasound), bed admissions, referrals to specialists and also telemedicine. The built in referral system and messaging means that there is no chance of losing data and no confidentiality can be broken.

Medrecord Online - Medrecord Online is an online health record system, which stores people's medical history, allowing individuals to access and control their own health records; whenever they want to, where ever they are in the world. Each person carries a Medcard, this is a 'dumb card' with a unique number on it allocated to a person with a bar code on the back. No data is stored on the card so it can be lost without consequence and is cheap to replace yet can save a person's life.

For more information contact Julia Price, PR Officer at Medilink Yorkshire and Humber:
Tel: 0114 232 9281, 07793 118890
Email:
j.price@medilink.co.uk|


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