Public spending watchdog Audit Scotland has warned The NHS in Scotland is not financially sustainable. Their report says to meet people’s health and care needs, the NHS urgently needs to move away from short-term fire-fighting to long-term fundamental change.
Audit Scotland has said that ‘this year’s projected deficit of £132 million was expected to grow to £159 million by 2023’.
Caroline Gardner, the auditor general, said
“8 out of 14 regional health boards have predicted they will end this year in the red. Only one of eight waiting times targets is being met, the number of people queuing for hospital treatment has risen and the number being treated has dropped.”
The Scottish Government wants to transform the healthcare system so that everyone can live longer, healthier lives at home or in a homely setting by 2020. Significant activity is underway to work towards this, but progress is slow. The recent health and social care medium-term financial framework and other measures have been welcomed, but more needs to be done. Audit Scotland will be carrying out further work to understand how this new approach will work in practice, says the report.
The report suggests that achieving these benefits is incredibly challenging and involves significant organisational and cultural change around the development and introduction of new smarter ways of working - designing, delivering, and using new digital technology. The Scottish public will benefit from services that are more joined up, tailored, and delivered closer to home. One way of ‘bridging the funding gap’ is ‘public health prevention’.
Brian Brown, Director for ARMED explains:
“Prevention and self-management are key to a sustainable health and social care service. Falls prevention, and the subsequent spiral of decline, is a huge challenge facing the aging population. Recent studies indicate a minimum return on investment of £3 for every £1 spent on falls prevention. But it’s not just about the money, or about easing pressure on the system and stopping people being admitted to hospital. The core aim is focused on improving quality of life for people, encouraging self-management and supporting independence.”
ARMED (Advanced Risk Modelling for Early Detection) combines pioneering predictive data analytics modelling - developed in partnership with Edinburgh Napier University - with innovative wearable technology and Health and Social Care data, to help identify and predict those at risk of falling, as well as indicating other frailty indicators earlier in the care cycle. Due to its exciting potential, the development of ARMED has been supported by the Digital Health and Care Institute (DHI).
By combining innovative wearable technology with Health and Social Care data, ARMED helps to identify and predict those at risk of falling, as well as revealing other frailty indicators. This allows for timely intervention and better self-management in the comfort of the Service User’s home, avoiding expensive hospital stays.
Dumfries & Galloway’s largest housing association, Loreburn Housing Association, were the first in the UK to pilot the ARMED (Advanced Risk Modelling for Early Detection) solution, to help predict those at risk of falling to enable faster support and better self-management.
The ARMED solution demonstrates enormous potential to support falls prevention and provides individuals (customers), their families and carers, with a tech solution that gives peace of mind while allowing people to live independently at home. Not only is this a positive outcome for the customer, but it also supports the integrated health and social care system in the region by reducing unnecessary, costly hospital admissions.
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