Worlds first trial of home based white blood cell monitoring for patients undergoing chemotherapy

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Case Study Summary
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Overview summary:
Working in collaboration with TeleHealth platform developer Dignio, Sykehuset Østfold Hospital in Norway began the pilot project in January 2017.

This ground-breaking cancer care pilot project has produced significant results. This is the first trial in the world where patients were empowered to measure their own white blood cells in the comfort of their own home. A small-scale trial has been completed which has shown positive feedback from patients, clinicians and carers. And now the hospital is funding a larger scale clinical trial.
Challenge identified and actions taken :
The side effects of chemotherapy seriously impact cancer patients’ daily lives. Managing them effectively is a long-time concern for doctors and clinicians.

The project was initiated and managed by Sykehuset Østfold Hospital’s cancer specialists Elisabet Nilsen Holm and Andreas Stensvold. Working in collaboration with Norway based TeleHealth platform provider Dignio A/S, Sykehuset Østfold Hospital began the project in January 2017.

Dignio Prevent is a secure, off-the-shelf, cloud based device agnostic Remote Patient Monitoring and Telehealth Solution. Dignio can be deployed very quickly with no input from, or impact on, current IT structures, software or licensing services. For the project with Sykehuset Østfold Hospital Dignio provided a complete remote patient vital signs monitoring solution which included an innovative, Bluetooth enabled, home based, white blood cell monitoring device.

By combining daily Remote Patient Monitoring of vital signs with CBT and frequent home based white blood cell measurement, healthcare providers can follow the patient in real-time and quickly catch any deterioration in the patient’s health and decrease the chance of hospital re-admission. Analysis of the data improves patient outcomes, reduces treatment costs and decreases re-admissions.
Impacts / outcomes:
“It’s clear from the pilot project that patients are happy to be monitored and managed in this way. They prefer to be at home, they feed more secure, more in control and less stressed. They begin to learn about and understand how they are responding to chemotherapy and begin to manage themselves.”
Elisabet Nilsen Holm, Cancer Specialist, Sykehuset Østfold Hospital

“I hadn’t used a tablet before, I don’t even have a smartphone, but the software is very easy to learn and use. When I was asked to join the trial I didn’t have to think twice. It’s interesting and exciting and has reassured me throughout the entire post chemotherapy period.”
Betty Helen Kristiansen, Cancer Patient

Combining Remote Patient Monitoring with CBT and home based white blood cell analysis improves patient outcomes, reduces treatment costs and decreases hospital re-admissions.

Our results which have been independently validated by the City of Oslo.
There is an English language version of their report into the effectiveness of Dignio at:
https://www.dignio.com/s/Telehealth-in-Norway-March-2017.pdf

As you will see in the report the outcome of using Dignio was:
32% Less hospital admissions
42% Less outpatient consultations
39% Less hospital bed days
59% Less home nursing
Supporting quote for the innovation from key stakeholders:
“The side effects of chemotherapy seriously impact cancer patients’ daily lives. Managing them effectively is a long-time concern for doctors and clinicians.

By combining daily remote monitoring of vital signs combined with frequent white blood cell measurement we can follow the patient almost in real-time and quickly catch any deterioration in the patients’ health and decrease the chance of hospital re-admission.”

Elisabet Nilsen Holm, Cancer Specialist, Sykehuset Østfold Hospital
Which local or national clinical or policy priorities does this innovation address:
Cancer - increasing diagnostic capacity
Plans for the future:
Sykehuset Østfold Hospital is currently funding a larger scale clinical trial of Dignio Prevent for home based white blood cell monitoring for patients undergoing chemotherapy.

This chemotherapy remote patient monitoring solution is now available in the UK via the UK subsidiary Dignio Ltd.

Dignio Ltd are actively looking for opportunities to replicate, in the UK, the successful pilot project that has been completed in Norway.
Tips for adoption:
The minimum pilot size to produce meaningful results is 20 patients. The patients have to be trained (it takes about 1 hour) and the nurses have also to be trained on how to care for patients remotely and how to interpret the results. This normally takes around 1 day with ongoing support from our team in Norway (they all speak perfect English). The trial in Norway comprised of patients with the most aggressive cancers where any contra-indication or exascerbation needed very speedy detection and diagnosis.
Contact for further information:
Ken Garner
Director of Business Development
Dignio Ltd
0203 371 9358
Ken.garner@dignio.com
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