Care City alongside the BHR Provider Alliance has committed to rolling out its Atrial Fibrillation (AF) Pathway across Barking, Havering & Redbridge, working with local community pharmacies and hospitals to find and treat AF and prevent strokes.

Launched at the Health & Care Innovation Expo last year and developed as part of Care City’s NHS England & Office of Life Sciences Innovation Test Bed Programme, the new One Stop AF Pathway finds people with undiagnosed AF, reduces the number of appointments needed to confirm diagnosis and waiting times for treatment.

The pathway uses Kardia Mobile – one of 37 innovations being supported to spread across England’s NHS by the NHS Innovation Accelerator (NIA). This handheld mobile ECG device can spot AF in 30-seconds. Those with an abnormal result are then reviewed by a Specialist Arrhythmia Nurse and where necessary invited to attend an appointment at the One Stop AF Clinic at Whipps Cross Hospital for further diagnostic tests and, if appropriate, treatment.

Initially only available at 20 community pharmacies, the BHR Provider Alliance has now committed to rolling out the technology and transforming the pathway of care for AF across the Boroughs of Barking, Havering and Redbridge.

John Craig, Chief Executive, Care City commented: “A challenge to the adoption of digital innovation across the health and care system has been how to secure commitment from clinicians to use the technology and understand the benefits to them, their patients and the NHS. We’ve found that the trick is to re-frame the problem, present how digital technology can enable clinicians to become innovators in their own right”.

He continued “Without pathway innovation like this, the NHS will struggle to realise the benefits of this great technology, for which they are paying millions. We are delighted that the BHR Provider Alliance understand this and that they have not just committed to distribute the technology, they are transforming their pathway at scale”.

John Brouder, Chief Executive, NELFT & Co-Chair, Provider Alliance, commented: “As an alliance, we are determined to play our part in transforming the health and care system in the interests of local residents. As a local organisation dedicated to health and care innovation, we recognise that success is not about eye-catching initiatives, but improving outcomes at scale. Having reflected as an Alliance on our priorities for 18-19, we have decided to make work to transform the pathway of care for atrial fibrillation across BHR our top priority”.

He continued “We are impressed with the early findings from Care City’s work deploying Alivecor’s Kardia Mobile and are delighted to work with the Care City team to build on their learnings around AF and mobile ECG technology to transform the AF pathway across BHR. We hope that this can improve outcomes and experiences for our patients, and help to reduce costs. At the same time, we hope that it can be a model of the kind of integrated care we are seeking to develop as an Alliance, and of the ways in which we can work together across the system to transform services for the better.”

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