Telehealth Programme Overview
Telehealth is the "delivery of health care services, where patients and providers are separated by distance. Telehealth uses ICT for the exchange of information for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and injuries, research and evaluation, and for the continuing education of health professionals” (WHO 2020)
According to the World Health Organisation’s global strategy on integrated people-centred health services 2016-2026, telehealth development is a key enabler of better communication and coordination between service users[i]. In Ireland, further to featuring in the eHealth Strategy for Ireland (2013)[ii], telehealth is identified in the Committee on the Future of Healthcare Sláintecare Report Implementation Strategy as a crucial enabler of the future health care model, in the HSE Corporate Plan 2021-24 as crucial to facilitating improved patient access to care closer to home[iii], and in the HSE National Service Plan 2022 as facilitating “earlier discharge from secondary care services… and enhance(d) access to services for patients and families”[iv]. The HSE Climate Action Strategy 2022-2050 also notes the crucial enabling role of telehealth within three of six identified priority areas towards achieving net zero emissions by 2050; ‘Transport and Mobility’, ‘Greener Models of Health Care’ and ‘Adaptation and Resilience’[v].
The National Telehealth Programme aims to:
- Improve population health outcomes through facilitating increased accessibility to and quality of digital health supports and services.
- Empower the population to manage their health and wellbeing within their community through the utilisation of digital health supports and services.
- Ensure citizens have access to, and greater control over, their own health and care data.
- Improve the early detection and management of chronic conditions.
- Improve efficiency and the maximisation of limited resources across the health service through supporting the incorporation of appropriate digital health technologies/supports/services across suitable care pathways.
- Develop digital health enabling technology capacity across the service.
The National Telehealth Programme is focused upon four core workstreams.
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- Video Enabled Care
- Remote Health Monitoring
- Online Supports & Therapies
- Engagement, Research and Evaluation
Page updated 31/07/2023