Video Consultation (VC) is now an established TEC solution. To date, NHS Wales has conducted over 340,000 video consultations with patients. The use of VC has a positive impact on patients, clinicians and the natural environment. It offers patients convenience and flexibility, reduces the carbon footprint of healthcare and creates efficiencies for clinicians. We are pleased to share the new and improved functionalities and associated training and support available for the scale and spread of VC in 2023.
Patient choice and new ways of working are key to the continued delivery of good patient experience.
In our increasingly technology enabled world, patients want choice and greater control over how they receive their healthcare that offers greater convenience, flexibility, and the ability to talk to healthcare professionals in a way that suits them.
As such, offering patients an opportunity to talk to a healthcare professional using the NHS Wales video Consultation Service has proven to offer an ideal solution, with its adoption widely accelerated through the COVID-19 pandemic but now a commonplace expectation.
Adopting a new way of working
TEC Cymru has worked and obtained insights from patients and healthcare professionals across Wales. This feedback has enabled us to offer tailored guidance and support to ensure that the NHS Wales Video Consultation Service is successfully embedded into NHS Wales. The total video consultations carried out now exceed 340,000 with over 90,000 Video Consultations having taking place this year alone.
To date, TEC Cymru has carried out over 7000 training sessions for primary and secondary care providers and facilitates face-to-face and virtual training in both one-to-one and virtual group settings. More information on training can be found on the Training pages,
In 2023 we will launch an initiative to proactively work with healthcare professionals to understand their barriers to change and collaboratively determine the best tools, processes and best ways of incorporating video consultations so that they can deliver wider patient choice.
Delivering on reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions & Costs
The NHS Wales Video Consultation Service delivers on the NHS Wales Decarbonisation Pledge to reduce CO2 emissions by helping in the avoidance of an estimated 1.6 million kilograms of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions.
VC gives patients their time back and has reduced the need for them to travel, with more than 9.7 million patient miles saved – this has helped to reduce carbon dioxide emissions which warm the planet and cause climate change. There is also a real financial benefit for patients as it helps reduce travels costs, this is particularly helpful during a cost-of-living crisis.
Virtual Group Consultations – the best way forward
The VC platform, Attend Anywhere, recently launched new functionality enabling Virtual Group Consultations, with further updates added on a regular basis to allow for practical and easy running of virtual group sessions.
It is ideal for settings where a range of patients can be brought together for the dissemination of the same advice and to go through frequently asked questions, where patients could benefit from a richer experience with fellow patients and healthcare professionals can save time from individual meetings.
· 4-hour group sessions – an end to 2-hour group consultation sessions!
· The ability to admit participants individually – no more admitting all participants into the group at the same time
· Chat functionality – ability for clinicians to initiate private messages with participants
· Breakout rooms - you can have various participants on a call and split them into smaller groups, you can then role play a scenario or ask them to perform a task, the possibilities are endless
· Blurred backgrounds – Provides added privacy to mask your background
· Improved stability, performance and security – security is at the forefront of the NHS Wales Video Consultation Service with improved stability to ensure that all your consultations run as smoothly as possible.
If you want any advice on virtual group con consultations, then please contact TECCymru@wales.nhs.uk