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.
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 and the document Secure Video and Audio Clinical Consultations: Clinical Aspects During the Emergency Measures to address Covid 19 (PDF) may be of use.
Governance is outlined in the following documents.
- Telehealth Organisation Governance and Readiness – Acute Services
- Telehealth Organisation Governance and Readiness – Community Services
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.
Teams/Skype for Business offers a strategic collaboration platform providing video and audio conferencing, document sharing, screen sharing, messaging etc. This may be suited for larger Multi-disciplinary meetings. Read more about Microsoft Teams.
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.
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.