NHS looking to offer free healthcare apps, devices from next year
The NHS will offer devices and apps for free to help patients manage their health, starting in UK next year.
At the NHS Confederation’s annual conference the chief executive of NHS England Simon Stevens said he believes the move could save thousands of lives a year, if widely adopted, and said: “For people with diabetes or heart disease, or pregnant women or acutely ill in-patients, there’s a huge opportunity to improve the quality of care and also save money in other parts of the NHS by getting millions of new medtech devices into the hands of doctors, nurses and therapists.”
Stevens said an NHS payment system overhaul will also help technology companies gain fast-track approval.
The first 10 to 15 apps and devices are set for approval later this year, with patients gaining access from April 2017, either directly or through GP surgeries and hospitals.
Stevens talked about of AliveCor, a mobile heart monitor that gives electrocardiogram readings within 30 seconds, and can detect, monitor and manage arrhythmias. In March, AliveCor introduced Kardia Band, which can be used with the Apple Watch and a smartphone app by people to capture their EKG.
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