Heart patients across west Wales are piloting an innovative new technology that allows clinicians to monitor their health and recovery from home.

Hywel Dda University Health Board has been working in partnership with Delta Wellbeing to support people with a phone app, called MyMobile.

Any changes to a patient’s health, or any response to medication, can be identified at the earliest opportunity, ensuring help can be provided if needed.

“Changes in the way that health care is delivered during the pandemic has been essential," said Jill Paterson, Director of Primary Care, Community and Long Term Care.

"This has helped reduce the exposure and spread of Covid-19 and minimise the impact of patient surges on facilities.

“As a health board, we have had to adapt the way we evaluate and care for patients using methods that do not rely on traditional in-person services.

"Telehealth technology has proved to be successful in providing necessary care to patients to ensure their well-being has continued to be monitored regularly."

This new digital approach allows people to record their symptoms and vital signs, including weight and blood pressure.

This will then be reviewed by the clinician and fed-back to the patient, to record progress and flag any concerns.

The technology, which adds to the care already offered by health professionals, also allows patients to have consultations by video, helping to avoid unnecessary visits to clinics or hospitals.

Some patients using technology said they found monitoring their own health had become a part of their normal daily routine.

As part of the pilot, patients receive equipment to take readings, including a blood pressure cuff, weighing scales and a pulse oximeter.

Clare Marshall, Heart Failure Nurse for Hywel Dda UHB, said: “Telehealth equipment allows me to manage medication changes from a distance.

"It means the patient doesn’t need to be exposed to a clinical area with the risk of Covid-19 in the current climate, which patients really like.

“I have been able to prevent a hospital admission for a patient whose heart rate had decreased following a change of medication.

"I was able to advise him to reduce this medication, record his heart rate over the weekend, which I would review using telehealth on the Monday."