Redbridge surgeries pilot a hi-tech system to help keep the doctor away

GPs in Redbridge are calling for better management of long-term illnesses after discovering 2,500 patients cost �36million a year in treatment.

Each patient has, on average, 16 GP appointments, eight outpatient appointments, five A&E attendances and two hospital admissions in one year.

More than 35,000 people in the borough live with chronic illness with the number increasing as they live longer and become more vulnerable to conditions including diabetes, asthmas, heart disease and obesity.

To deal with the challenge doctors are now using a high tech software programme to monitor a patient’s condition more closely which enables them to make more informed decisions.

It also offers early intervention measures and gives advice to people on how to manage their condition better at home.

Dr Anil Mehta, clinical director of Fairlop Polysystem, said: “We’re piloting a roving GP programme which is focusing on the 20 most vulnerable patients in each of my area’s nine practices who have a high likelihood of being admitted to hospital.

“We’re visiting them individually, assessing their condition and needs and ensuring they have the appropriate support network in place, such as carers and district nurses.

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“The focus is on short-term admissions that can be avoided with the right support. A lot of it is common sense but this technology allows us to identify and get to grips with potential problems quickly.”

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