The HealthService24 project ran patient trials from September 2005 - September 2006 at 3 sites in parallel. Each trial site targeted patients with different health conditions, so that a wider spectrum of conditions and cases could be validated in the timeframe of the project. The validation pilot sites of the HealthService24 were chosen strategically so that they cover both the most commercial promising medical applications and have representative character for other European hospitals.
Medisch Spectrum Twente (MST) in Enschede, Netherlands, focus on high risk pregnancies.
Hospital Clínic Provincial de Barcelona (HCPB), Spain, focus on COPD patients.
LITO Polyclinic, Paralimini, Cyprus, focus on cardiac patients.
All three services have the same process workflow, since the measured vital signals are more or less the same and the service provided is identical.
High-risk pregnant women trials. The trials will use the HealthService24 to support integrated homecare for women with high-risk pregnancies. Women with high-risk pregnancies are often admitted to the hospital for longer periods of time because of possible pregnancy-related complications. Admission is necessary for the intensive monitoring of the patient and the unborn child. Homecare with continuous monitoring is desirable and can postpone hospitalisation and reduce costs, as well as offering more security for the mother and unborn child. In this trial, patients will be monitored using the patient-BAN. The maternal and foetal bio-signals will be remotely transmitted to the hospital. An additional objective of the trial will be to evaluate if such a solution postpones hospitalisation and reduces costs.
In high risk pregnancies the Medisch Spectrum Twente has already a monitoring room where resident patients are monitored 24 hours per day. As a result there is no difficulty and no additional required personnel for the implementation of the HealthService24 trials. A console will be added in the monitoring room where the nurse on duty will visualize the data of the patients. In case of an incident the nurse will contact the patient and the medical person in charge, and a decision will be taken to bring the patient in the hospital or not. To be noted that in this trial the users are young and technology aware.
COPD-patients trials. The trials will use the HealthService24 to support remote assistance for elderly and chronically ill patients suffering from co-morbidities including the COPD. The MobiHealth nurse-BAN will be used to perform patient measurements during nurse home visits and the MobiHealth patient-BAN will be used for continuous monitoring during patient rehabilitation at home or outdoors. It is very important to facilitate patients' access to healthcare professionals without saturating the available resources, and this is one of the main expected outcomes of the HealthService24 remote monitoring approach. Parameters to be measured are oxygen saturation, ECG, spirometry, temperature, glucose and blood pressure.
Cardiac patients trials. The HealthService24 will be tested by two groups of patients:
Group1: Patients who had an acute episode and have been admitted and stabilised but need continuing monitoring of condition and drug regime for a further few days. With the HealthService24 these patients will be allowed an earlier discharge, with an appropriate follow up (using the HealthService24) in the place of their choice.
Group 2: Patients in a suspected acute episode, brought in for examination; a decision needs to be taken whether to keep the patients at the hospital for observation, or to discharge them home. In case a patient is discharged, and there is a suspicion of an abnormal condition, the patient will be equipped with the MobiHealth patient-BAN enabling constant monitoring of the patient’s state.
The support of the validation trials will require the adaptation of the existing system according to the requirements of the end-user. For this we will need to provide an operational HealthService24 system that delivers a service according to specified end-user (i.e. healthcare practitioner) requirements, and perform a feasibility study on the HealthService24 technical integration and adaptation in the healthcare providers infrastructure. Starting with the definition of the end-user requirements (a task where the end-users have the primary role), we adapt the system according to economic criteria, the idea being to avoid a major development effort. The adaptation will focus primarily to the internationalization of the system (when needed), the configuration according to the locally available network as well as minor modifications to fulfill local requirements.