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Focus on: Primary Care Reception + Flo Lead

Beverley Holland – Reception Lead 

Roundwood Surgery recruited Flo as a member of the practice team a few years ago, here is a video where Dr Milind Tadpatrikar and COPD patient Jim McCabe discuss how the surgery use Flo in General Practice.  In Roundwood’s 2015 CQC visit, the report cites their use of ‘Flo’ demonstrating that pragmatic telehealth solutions can be successfully implemented in General Practice and even contributed to their attainment of an Outstanding CQC rating.

Beverley Holland is the Reception Lead at Roundwood Surgery in Nottinghamshire.  Beverley’s role with Flo is quite innovative and whilst her role within the surgery is not clinical, Beverley works directly with patients, introducing them to Flo and helping them to get started.

“I work at Roundwood Surgery as a member of the Reception Team.  My day to day role mainly focuses on the front reception desk, handling patient requirements, telephone calls, prescriptions, subject access requests and scanning, just to name a few things.

I was first introduced to Flo a couple of years ago while working as a part-time Receptionist; I was asked if I would like the opportunity to help patients get started on the Flo programme when we first launched Flo.

I was a bit apprehensive at first, as the appointments with patients were face-to-face, which was all new to me as usually I would have my colleagues with me in reception.  Sometimes patients would ask me clinical questions which I didn’t have the answers for straight away; however, I work with our Senior Nurse, Ian Jackson, who is also the clinician for Flo, and I make sure I get a reply to them following the appointment. 

Working Alongside Flo

In my current role, I work with Flo for two hours on Monday mornings, and also on Tuesday afternoons.  During this time, I will on average see 2 or 3 patients who have been referred through for Flo monitoring, usually due to having recorded high blood pressure.  I demonstrate how to use the Blood Pressure machine by putting the cuff on myself (I am not able to put the cuff on the patient due to me not being a clinician).
I then explain how Flo will interact, and how they should reply to her.  I also go through all of the ‘do’s and don’ts’ with the programme and explain to the patients how readings sent to Flo will be reviewed by the Surgery.  I finally check that they have understood the process and are happy to join the programme.  Patients are provided with an information pack to take home confirming everything that we have gone through, and I always add my name and Ian’s name so that they have a contact at the surgery.

After the appointment with the patient, I create their record in Flo and check that they have replied the same day to their first opt-in welcome message.  This ensures that the patients are up and running ready for their prompt the next day asking for their first Blood Pressure reading.

Once a month I liaise with Ian and give him a list of all of our patients on Flo.  Depending on their readings, Ian may ask me to adjust protocols for specific patients; for example if they can be switched from daily to weekly, to fortnightly and eventually to monthly once their hypertension has been stabilised through improved self-management.  Ian also has time set aside each week when he will access the patient’s readings and check how things are going for them.   For example if any patients have recorded particularly high readings, Ian is then able to intervene and provide care accordingly, such as sending the patient a message through Flo to ask them to book an appointment with him.  He is then able to check their readings against the surgery blood pressure monitors and decide if any medication is required or needs to be adjusted.

The Difference for Roundwood Surgery

I can honestly say that Flo is helping so many of our patientsby having access to the hypertension programme and self-monitoring.  With Flo prompting patients to follow self-management guidance, readings are available in real time at the practice which means that patients do not need to make time and attend in person.  It is such an easy to use process, and only takes a couple of minutes of the patients’ time – and obviously Flo doesn’t cost the patient a penny.
I also have a number of patients using Flo to support their Asthma and COPD.  We use a similar process as with hypertension, but I demonstrate the relevant equipment.  The equipment provided for each chronic disease monitoring is all free for the patient.

I’ve also extended the Flo service to include DMARD (Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs) patients who are on regular blood monitoring for antirheumatic medication, such as Methotrexate.  I asked our Flo System Administrators to design a protocol to assist with this for one, two, and three monthly blood monitoring, Flo will also nudge the patient to book a blood test at the surgery.  This is also proving to be excellent service for the patient.

Moving forwards, I have plans to develop protocols to support those patients who need regularly scheduled injections at the surgery, for example Depo and Vitamin B12.  This is with the aim of helping patients adhere to their treatment schedule, as sometimes appointments are not able to be booked that far in advance, so patients will receive a reminder prompt from Flo asking them to book an appointment at the surgery.”

#Roundwood Surgery #Nottinghamshire #COPD #TotallyUnique

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