Moorfields Eye Hospital has treated 80 per cent of A&E patients online since coronavirus outbreak
- Credit: Moorfields Eye Hospital
Moorfields has enabled 80 per cent of its A&E patients to access the treatment they need through an online consultation since the coronavirus outbreak, without having to travel to the Old Street eye hospital.
The specialist trust has held almost 10,000 appointments to support patients living with a range of eye conditions, those requiring a follow-up to surgery, as well as running its essential accident and emergency (A&E) service virtually since March.
Patients can typically see an A&E doctor within one minute of logging on to the platform on a smartphone, computer or tablet, and Moorfields now hosts over 600 video appointments a week thanks to its ambitious digital programme.
The service has enabled Moorfields to offer emergency eye care services across more areas of London than before, which has freed up staff from other trusts in London to treat patients with coronavirus.
Dr Peter Thomas, director of digital innovation and consultant paediatric ophthalmologist, said: “Necessity has forced us to approach problems in new ways and this is a great example of how we can utilise technology to provide a rapid solution.”
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“The results and feedback we see over the next few months will help us to decide how widely we should use video consultations as part of our ongoing services.
Patient Jennifer Slater, 68, was happy to access a video consultation online. She said: “With what we are coping with today, many patients like me are scared to come into hospitals and of course doctors and nurses are feeling the same. The wonderful thing about the consultation is that you don’t feel like you are miles away, it’s like you are in the clinic. It made me feel so much better knowing someone could not only talk to me but see me.”
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The platform has a virtual waiting room where a ‘virtual receptionist’ prioritises patients and signposts them to the correct service.
Moorfields virtual A&E waiting room can be accessed on the Moorfields website, and is open from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 4pm on weekends.
Access the treatment online at moorfields.nhs.uk/emergency-care.