St Mary’s Hospital To Trial Innovative Video Technology

St Mary’s Hospital

Travelling to the mainland for a hospital consultation could soon be a thing of the past if a trial of innovative technology is successful.

It will allow two consultants based at Treliske, one an ear, nose and throat specialist, and the other in gastrointestinal medicine, to talk directly to patients at St Mary’s hospital using video conferencing equipment.

The trial follows a recent LINk4Scilly report into ways to reduce the cost and inconvenience of travelling to mainland hospitals. LINk’s Sue Williams says travel to the mainland for health appointments is tiring and disruptive and she hopes that the community takes up this new technology with enthusiasm.

Funding is coming from the Council who are working with Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group and LINk on the project.

Chairman of Community Services, Cllr Richard McCarthy, said with the imminent closure of the helicopter service, they need to think creatively about how to ensure continued access to health care.

Richard said, “New technology has to be a sensible way forward for providing health services on the islands. It won’t be there for everyone but it will give more options and greater flexibility so that people don’t have to give up a day’s work or school to attend appointments.”

The equipment was installed at St Mary’s hospital some time ago and hospital manager Anita Bedford says they’ve been pushing for clinics on the mainland to take advantage of it.

She says she’s delighted that this is now going to happen.

Dr John Garman from St Mary’s Health Centre brokered the arrangement with the two consultants. He says the savings made on just a few flights will more than pay for the cost of this pilot project.

If it proves successful, it’ll be rolled out to other clinical specialisms and further investment made in equipment.


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