TEC Cymru, the national programme for technology enabled care funded by Welsh Government, has been presented with the Telehealth Award at the 2021 National Health Business Awards ceremony.

health business awards logo

Awarded in recognition of its rapid rollout of the NHS Wales Video Consulting (VC) Service, the Health Business Awards recognise and celebrate the innovation and valuable contributions made by NHS Trusts and the individuals they employ.

The 17 award categories cover facilities management, technology, procurement and transport as well as the Outstanding Achievement in Healthcare Award.

The Telehealth Award is given in recognition of the organisation or programme that demonstrates the most innovative use of information and communication technology to deliver health services, expertise and information over distance.

TEC Cymru received the award for its NHS VC rollout - a service that provided healthcare professionals and patients with a safe method for communicating whilst safeguarding frontline staff and reducing any risk of further transmission within weeks of COVID-19 restrictions becoming a reality.

Other teams shortlisted for the award include:

  • Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust - Patient Telehealth App
  • Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust - Robotic Surgery Telementoring
  • Liverpool City Council / Medication Support Company - Remote Medicines Management

The National Health Business Awards are supported by Health Business magazine and this year’s awards were presented by Dr Mark Porter MBE. Dr Porter was appointed MBE for services to healthcare in 2005, and recently received the Healthwatch-UK Award for his contribution to public understanding of evidence-based medicine.

Sara Khalil, TEC Cymru’s Programme Lead, said this honour and recognition is fantastic news for the team. She said:

“When COVID first became a reality in Wales, we had a very small team undertaking a few VC pilots to understand the potential. When we were asked to take on the task of getting video consultation out across NHS Wales, we saw this as both a challenge and an opportunity to make a real difference on the ground.

“Even now it really means a lot to play a part in helping tens of thousands of patients, public, clinicians and staff stay safe through this pandemic in an effort to keep services running.”

She commended the many teams who play their part in making this kind of transformation possible across the NHS and remarked that it was a truly collaborative effort. She added:

“The circumstances that drove the adoption of the VC service were bred out of necessity. However, through our evaluations, it is wonderful to see an appetite for video to stay as a sustainable part of services. The positive feedback from patients and clinicians has been consistent irrespective of location, age and back ground.

“We are really proud that today over 270k consultations have taken place, all thanks to our incredible TEC Cymru team, our partners and every single Health Board, whose relentless efforts have made it possible.”