New technology is being harnessed to help people across West Norfolk to stay well this winter.
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital and West Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group have worked together to create the Choose Well app, which has now been launched on all app stores.
Choose Well has been designed to help people to make the right choice for their care over the winter period. It is being launched now to make sure its use is maximized over the winter period when the NHS sees a surge in demand for its services.
The app points patients to advice on self-care and alternative services to the Emergency Department such GPs, Pharmacies and Urgent Care Centres along with providing guidance for elderly people, expectant mothers.
Choose Well is the brainchild of the QEH’s Chief Operating Officer Cíara Moore and it has received recognition from the Care Quality Commission for ‘outstanding practice’.
She said: “We have created the Choose Well app to provide patients with as much information as possible to ensure they are making the right decision for their care. The app is packed full of important information on the best options for their care, whether it is going to the nearest pharmacy, visiting a GP or being able to treat yourself. But one thing I am particularly pleased with is that we have targeted information to help our vulnerable elderly residents and will hopefully help them to stay well over the winter. We are also including important information of what people need to bring to the hospital along with promoting the #EndPJParalysis campaign where we encourage patients to stay mobile during their visit. In the next few weeks, we will have the capacity to push health notifications.”
Mrs Moore came up with the idea of the app during her previous role at Cambridgeshire University Hospitals and it was recognised as an area of outstanding practice during the Trust’s CQC report. Clinicians have been closely involved with the creation of the app, which has also been supported by the East of England Ambulance Service.
Mrs Moore said: “Technology is improving all of the time so it is vital that the NHS uses this to help support our services during the busy winter period. This is the first app within the organisation and we have two more exciting innovations to follow.”
John Webster, Accountable Officer for West Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group said: “We are happy to be supporting the development of this initiative. The information contained in the Choose Well App will guide patients to the services which are available closer to their own homes and help them to make more effective use of the healthcare services that are provided locally.”