WebVMC and Home Telehealth Ltd. form partnership in the United Kingdom to help meet demand from British Government's home patient monitoring programme

Conyers 07 February 2007WebVMC, developer of the RemoteNurse telehealth system that enables 24 hour virtual medical care for remote disease management, has entered into an exclusive partnership with Home Telehealth Ltd. (HTL), one of the United Kingdom's major providers of telehealth products and managed care services to several NHS PASA NFA for Telecare suppliers. HTL will distribute WebVMC's software-based telehealth monitoring product in the United Kingdom and the 25 European Union countries. The announcement was made by Scott Sheppard, President and Chief Technology Officer of WebVMC and Peter Range, CEO of HTL.

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"We selected WebVMC as we feel it is clearly the best of breed technology available in home health care monitoring, empowering those with long-term conditions to do more to care for themselves", stated Peter Range. "Their programme is user-friendly and easily adaptable for use in multiple settings via a variety of IT platforms. WebVMC supplies the intelligent software that sits behind the monitoring devices to enable true 24/7 disease management anytime and anywhere. With WebVMC, we are confident that health and social care commissioners will be able to deliver better community-based care to those most at risk whilst improving the lives of those with complex needs, achieving gains in quality of life and reductions in acute hospital use."

WebVMC's expansion into international markets will assist HTL in its efforts to provide telehealth solutions with a strong emphasis on patient education and empowerment, so that people are fully informed about their condition and are better able to manage it. The WebVMC RemoteNurse has obtained the required EC Declaration of Conformity, EC Declaration of Mutual Compatibility and MHRA registration and established a secure web server for NHS organisations fit for purpose for Local Service Providers (LSP's) working with the Connecting for Health programme.

WebVMC's Scott Sheppard said the main distinction between other telehealth options and his company's product is its unique features which include multi-patient, multi-language, multi-platform and customisable disease management capability. "Most telehealth products simply provide disease monitoring through existing systems but our software-based technology offers increased connectivity and the ability to access health care data via the Internet which allows patients at home to obtain a speedy intervention when their health deteriorates. This timely response could prevent an unnecessary hospitalisation and allows the person to stay at home and remain independent", Scott Sheppard stated. "We are confident that the RemoteNurse solution delivers a balanced technology mix that will assist the Whole System Demonstrators outlined in the recent White Paper and benefit the wholescale redesign of services for those with long-term conditions."

The demand for telehealth technology and services in the United Kingdom has increased significantly due to recent government Preventative Technology Grant (PTG) funding and forthcoming Whole System Long-Term Conditions demonstrators. The British government recognised that an aging population, rapidly rising health and social care costs and a shortage of health and social care professionals required a new vision and delivery of care in the community. Currently in the United Kingdom, over 70 percent of health care costs are spent on people over age 65; 80 percent of those people have at least one chronic illness, most commonly respiratory disease, heart disease, diabetes and hypertension. The recent shift of emphasis from providing residential care for older people to offering services that help them to remain independent in their own homes has resulted in a reduced number of people 65 and over in supported care as of March 2006, a drop of three percent from the previous year. (National Health Service, Home Care Services report published by The Information Centre, March 2006)

HTL's Peter Range cited current data indicating that telehealth programmes have reduced hospital admissions by 38 percent and reduced bed utilisation by 56 percent among patients with congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, through the use of home patient monitoring technology. Additionally, government figures estimate that a greater use of telehealth technology could produce savings in excess of GBP100 million per annum. (Audit Commission, Assistive Technology, Independence and well-being 2, 2004)

"We believe that the WebVMC RemoteNurse multi-patient Kiosk solution offers the most cost-effective telehealth solution, providing good local community care and personalised health and social care services", stated Peter Range. Consequently, circa GBP140 million in grant funds have been designated in the United Kingdom to develop new and better telecare technologies and managed services to enhance and maintain the well being, self-esteem and independence of individuals.

Home Telehealth Limited provides telehealth technology and managed service provision for home monitoring applications to several NHS PASA NFA for Telecare suppliers. It has eight years experience in implementing programmes for telecare, telehealth and telemedicine bringing the necessary "hands on" assistance to organisations looking to commence telehealth and telecare programmes for the first time. HTL has offices in Cardiff, Wales and England.

WebVMC provides virtual health care technology using the Internet to manage care for the person with a chronic illness, connecting the patient, caregiver and clinician for 24 hour disease management from any location, in multiple health care delivery systems - home care, hospitals and assisted living facilities. With innovative capabilities, such as audio tracks, touch-screen access and instant messaging, WebVMC's products are user-friendly, comprehensive solutions that cost-effectively manage patients with chronic illness for better health status and better quality of life. More company news is available in the VMW January 2007 article Senior Independence Retirement Services selects WebVMC to provide remote disease management services for continuing care patients.


Leslie Versweyveld

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