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Watch the film - Wearable technology during Covid: Supporting the NHS

May 20, 2021

The challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic to the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK led to a rapid adaptation of infection disease protocols in-hospital. In March 2020, at the start of the pandemic in the UK, there was a lack of knowledge of the virus and its transmission. With a view to minimise the risk of infection for nursing staff, researchers from the University of Oxford’s Institute of Biomedical Engineering (IBME) and Critical Care Research Group (CCRG) have adapted a research project to provide a novel electronic monitoring system that allows the remote and real-time review of the vital signs of ambulatory COVID-19 patients, on isolation wards at the Oxford John Radcliffe hospital.

The wearable ambulatory monitoring system, or Virtual High-Dependency Unit (vHDU), uses non-invasive wearable devices to continuously monitor the physiology of hospitalised patients, whether they are walking, sitting or lying on their bed. The system went live on 20 March 2020 and has been used in all three waves of the pandemic, in the UK.

In this talk, Cristian Roman, presents the challenges with the fast-paced adaptation and deployment of the system and also looks at some of the future opportunities in patient care, for both hospital and home-monitoring, that the pandemic has accelerated with the fast adoption of digital health systems.