Remote monitoring of discharged patients suggests annual savings of £250k, trial finds
Lilli, a UK healthcare technology company, is partnering with Dorset Council in a three-month pilot to identify cost and time savings in care provision and enable existing service users and newly-discharged patients from hospital to live independently in their homes for longer.
Dorset Council is piloting the use of Lilli technology across five social care teams caring for 100 people in their homes. The aim is to identify the potential for reductions in time and subsequently cost for monitoring service users, saving frontline teams between three and five hours each week.
The pilot also seeks to delay entry to residential care and reduce the number of crisis events affecting individual users.
So far, the pilot’s estimated results indicate that use of Lilli technology will result in annualised savings of 780 hours of occupational therapy time and cost savings of £250,000. The results further suggest Dorset Council can reduce the frequency of daily visits to newly-discharged patients, saving up to £4,000 per person annually.
By enabling someone to remain at home rather than go into residential care, the council could save more than £30,000 per year per person.
“We are pleased to partner with Lilli on this important pilot,” said Cllr Piers Brown, Lead Member for Health at Dorset Council. “It has the potential to improve provision across Dorset and our partner organisations in the NHS, making sure we are able to support people safely in their own homes and they can be discharged from hospital using the D2A (discharge to assess) pathway to support their ongoing recovery.
“We have a strong belief in focussing on what’s important to the people we support, looking at their strengths, what they can do rather than what they can’t, so we are tailoring the pilot around these themes.”
Lilli’s solution uses machine learning to analyse a range of data sources, such as temperature, motion, and power usage, creating algorithms specific to each user’s daily life in their home, setting a flight path for what is expected of that individual.
Whenever their behaviour indicates a possible deterioration in health or wellbeing, care teams are alerted, with follow-up interventions by GPs, district nurses or community rehabilitation teams as appropriate. The solution detects deterioration much earlier than any other method but without false positives, allowing clinicians to act preventively before more complex treatment is unavoidable, Lilli says.
Nick Weston, Chief Commercial Officer at Lilli, added: “We are thrilled with the initial success of this pilot with Dorset – an authority that understands how data-driven, smart technology can help providers make better-informed, more effective decisions about patient needs and resource allocation, improving outcomes and saving lives.
“Using this technology, over-stretched health and social care providers can intervene earlier while monitoring at a distance, reducing the need for hospital admissions or residential care and lowering costs. Tech will not replace care by humans, but it will improve it.”
The trial was facilitated through the Independent Future Group (IFG). Formed by Lilli, the IFG is a coalition of forward-thinking local authorities and professional care associations. It aims to explore the further use of technology and help address the changing needs of care.
The group’s aim is to increase the accessibility of non-intrusive technology and ensure it is available to all who need it. The IFG aims to improve the quality of technology-enabled care (TEC) and to support the stabilisation and sustainability of the social care system.
Lilli’s technology has already undergone trials with Brent Council and discussions are also in progress with 17 local authorities and Clinical Commissioning Groups about additional implementations.
Any social care organisation or local authority can partner with Lilli through the IFG to explore a further pilot project similar to the current trial in Dorset, defining success criteria while examining patient pathway outcomes, cost savings and improved productivity.
Throughout the pandemic and beyond, more and more councils have been partnering with technology firms to deliver cost and time savings for their healthcare teams, as well as facilitate independent living in the homes of users.
For example, Carmarthenshire County Council has been working with assistive technology firm Tunstall Healthcare to deliver technology-enabled community support. The collaboration seeks to identify potential health and wellbeing issues at the earliest opportunity and provide care and support where and when it is needed most.
Additionally, Stoke-on-Trent City Council has been working with two local NHS trusts to pilot the use of home-based sensors in the homes of the city’s most vulnerable patients in a bid to reduce hospital admissions.
The trial uses MySense: a set of sensors placed in each of the patients’ homes to monitor their movements and routines. The data is then recorded and sent to a dashboard monitored by the High Intensity Users Team to look for patterns, changes and areas of concern, which could result in an avoidable admission to hospital.