Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust Implements Teleswallowing®


Teleswallowing Limited are pleased to announce that a North West Coast Academic Health Science Network Innovation with Impact Award of £25,000 was secured to implement Teleswallowing® in Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Here’s their Advanced Clinical Specialist Speech and Language Therapist’s view on Teleswallowing®:

We were awarded monies from the Innovation Agency to buy equipment in order to implement Teleswallowing® within the community. We identified care homes with high referral rates for swallowing assessments and then worked alongside Teleswallowing Limited to engage the homes and establish encrypted broadband connection between the Speech and Language Therapy community bases and the nursing and care homes. We worked with Teleswallowing Limited to train nursing staff in the homes. This was fun as the nursing staff were really engaged – they enjoyed learning more about swallowing and what was going wrong with their residents' swallowing at mealtimes. It also helped them understand why residents were coughing when they were having a drink. The training was great as it gave the nurses a deeper understanding of swallowing difficulties which made them more able to identify other residents in need of assessment and more able to give accurate information on referral. Using the iPad to connect to the Speech and Language Therapy base was just a case of clicking the pre-programmed number and, as lots of nurses were used to using smartphones already, they found it really easy. We can now use Teleswallowing® to support triage. It helps us to prioritise the caseload without moving from the office. Reviews can be done in as little as 15 minutes – much better than driving there and back which may take up to 2 hours. Initial assessments take longer (about 39 minutes) but this still means we save time on travel and this allows us much more time to work with our patients with communication difficulties that often get overlooked. Making changes in service delivery is always difficult but the time taken at the beginning to set the service up has allowed us to save so much time now and in the future.

Advanced Clinical Specialist Speech and Language Therapist, Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust