Internet video experiment helps doctors to assess stroke patients

Two primary care trusts (PCTs) in England are experimenting with internet video in order to treat stroke patients.

Doctors working in Lancashire and Cumbria NHS PCTs are currently using high definition (HD) video conferencing in order to treat those affected by strokes.

The Telestroke Project lets medical professionals assess people remotely from their home, allowing doctors to carry out assessments with the speed required to make an effective post-stroke diagnosis.

Paul Davies, consultant stroke physician at North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: ‘Thrombolysis treatment can only be given to patients within four and a half hours of the onset of their stroke so time is core to this treatment and Telestroke will help improve the speed of patient diagnosis.” Digital marketers in the pharmaceutical field should keep up with this development.

He added: “We are using technology to take the stroke specialists to the patient, rather than moving the patient long distances, around rural areas, to where the specialists work. In an acute stroke, time is of the essence and the sooner treatment can be provided, the better.”

The experiment could also mean good news for the NHS’s finances.

Shuja Punekar, consultant physician of cerebro-vascular medicine, revealed the technology could cut the NHS’s costs by millions of pounds, with the average saving per patient around £50,000 a year.

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