Multiple Research and Evaluation projects including a wide range of internal, external and collaborative studies have been undertaken this year, measuring the impact of TEC Cymru’s Programmes in collaboration with many National stakeholders.   

Find out about the Day in the Life of Series, TERMS, and our studies evaluating TEC’s role in dementia, mental health and many other clinical settings here…  

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Measuring the impact of Video Consulting (VC) has been central to this year’s focus with some fantastic studies such as the Day in the Life of Series which monitored first hand patient experience with using TEC. This builds upon substantial evaluation that was undertaken during the pandemic, with a view to continuous monitoring and improvement of the service. 

Our study exploring the impact of VC use in providing remote care in mental health was documented in the British Medical Journal which can be read here. 

With the launch of Telehealth and Telecare programmes within TEC Cymru, new and exciting collaborative studies have begun to explore products including eConsult and eHub.  eConsult is an online consultation & triage platform which collects medical or administrative requests and sends it through to your GP practice, to triage and decide on the right care. eHub  is an AI algorithm created to improve and automate GP practice patient triage. We will be taking an 18-month mixed methods evaluation with Swansea University and Health Technology Wales.  This will explore the addition of eHub (AI triage) to eConsult across 25 GP sites in England, Scotland & Wales to improve patient and clinical processes and experience.

Also this year, TEC Cymru’s Research team launched the TERMS project in response to NHS Wales’ significant rise in clinical needs, resources, referrals and waiting lists across mental health services. TEC Cymru’s proposed research, funded by Q-Lab, will investigate how we might design and deliver a timely, efficient, and pupil-centred remote monitoring services in secondary schools. The discovery phase is now complete, and we are pleased to have been awarded funding for a second phase to progress initial findings. 

A range of other external studies have also begun including HUGS which is exploring the use of the HUG doll for care home residents with dementia. The positive benefits of physical human contact are well known, however, the challenges of providing this continually are numerous. HUG is a soft toy/doll with weighted limbs designed to hug the user and has been developed to aid those with Dementia. Designed by researchers, engineers, and health professionals, working directly with those with Dementia by Cardiff Metropolitan University. The concept behind HUG is to reduce overall anxiety, encourage conversation and to provide comfort. HUG is a sensory, soft product designed to be cuddled and has a beating heart within its body and can play music including favourite playlists. TEC (Technology Enabled Care) Cymru will be capturing the outcomes of using HUG in different settings (nursing, residential, community, and hospital) and understanding how people feel about its use.  

Throughout the year we have developed many successful research partnerships with stakeholders across Wales. In November, we undertook an international collaboration with Canada’s Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and The Royal College of Psychiatrists Wales exploring Digital Mental Health: From Policy to Practice. Over 100 multinational delegates joined the informative discussion with clinicians, researchers, policy-makers and educators to share and learn innovative practices, policy and research. Our thanks to everyone involved. 

You can read more about our past and present studies on our Research pages

TEC Cymru and stakeholders have received the following recognition in publications including the British Medical Journal & Health Informatics: 

· Digital NHS Wales: a coding reliability analysis based on the voices of 22 978 patients and clinicians on the benefits, challenges and sustainability of video consulting April 2022, BMJ Open 12(4):e57874. DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2021-057874.  

· Early evidence and lessons learnt from an NHS Wales Video Consulting Service January 2022; Health Informatics Journal 28(1):146045822110690. DOI: 10.1177/14604582211069030