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Virtual health

The COVID-19 pandemic presents significant challenges for the delivery of health services; both in terms of the continuity of standard care and in the provision of services specifically tailored to address the pandemic.

Watch Chief Clinical Officer, Colm Henry, explain how technology can help us to deliver our services more effectively.

Given the emphasis placed on ensuring social distancing where possible in the community, and as part of efforts to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus to healthcare workers, solutions to allow clinical consultations take place remotely using videoconferencing are required.

The National COVID-19 Telehealth Steering Committee has approved the following solutions, made available during the pandemic, to support communication and collaboration across the health service. Usage should comply with HSE IT policy and standards (PDF) and the document Secure Video and Audio Clinical Consultations: Clinical Aspects During the Emergency Measures to address Covid 19 (PDF) may be of use.

Use of video conferencing must comply with HSE IT policy and standards (PDF)

Governance is outlined in the following documents.

Attend Anywhere

A web-based platform for virtual clinics offering a secure private online waiting area for patients. It provides video and audio conferencing, screen sharing and messaging during clinical consultations. Read more about attend anywhere

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams offers a platform for video and audio conferencing. It allows document sharing and storage, screen sharing and messaging.

Microsoft Teams is available if you have already been migrated to the national HealthIrl domain.

If You are not on the national Health Irl domain:

  • You can still attend a Teams meeting (by clicking on the invitation link received), but you will not be able to schedule a meeting.
  • You can use Skype for Business or Webex instead.

Microsoft Teams is only available if you are on HealthIrl domain

The phased migration of all staff to HealthIrl is continuing. Microsoft Teams will be available to you when your migration is done.

Read more about Microsoft Teams

Skype for Business

Skype for Business offers online video, audio calling and chat facilities.

It is available on all domains.

Make a request for Skype for Business on the self-service portal

WhatsApp

Exceptional provision has been made for this app to be made available during the Covid-19 crisis on the HSE network, primarily to support messaging, but it also can support video calls. It is suited for 1-4 users. Read more about Whatsapp

Cisco WebEx

An enterprise solution for video conferencing, online meetings, screen share and webinars. It provides for controlled ‘room’ access and this may be suited to clinical consultation and larger meetings. Read more about Cisco Webex meetings

Remote patient monitoring

The National COVID-19 Telehealth Steering Committee mandated a Remote Patient Monitoring Working Group to examine international evidence for use of remote patient monitoring solutions, and to develop guiding principles and solution evaluation criteria for their implementation. Read more about remote patient monitoring

Related content

Page last reviewed: 23/04/2020
Next review due: 23/04/2023