Healthy Outlook® is a preventative service that helps people with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) manage their condition more effectively.
There is a strong link between COPD hospital admissions and environmental factors such as the weather and levels of circulating infections.
The Healthy Outlook® COPD Forecast Alert Service, and associated anticipatory care, has been developed to help prevent exacerbations and keep people out of hospital. Current evidence indicates that the service can help reduce unplanned NHS contact and hospital admissions by around 20%.
The Healthy Outlook® Forecast Alert is based on a model, developed by the Met Office, to predict the risk of COPD hospital admissions. The main triggers are cold weather, virus load in the community and seasonal pattern.
The service is typically commissioned by Primary Care Trusts or Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and patients are recruited through GP practices.
Patients who sign up to the service will receive a comprehensive patient pack which outlines the actions they can take to keep themselves well, along with a useful fridge magnet to act as a reminder and a thermometer to monitor temperature in their house.
At times when they may be at greater risk of ill health the Met Office alert service is activated and reminds patients of some simple measures to take, via an interactive telephone call which also records information about the patients current state of health. The automated call sends information back to the practice database to ensure staff members have access to call logs and can monitor whether any patients have reported that their symptoms are getting worse. The automated call allows the early reporting of symptoms and ensures that patients have sufficient medication.
The Met Office will inform practices before patients are called, and again after the calls are complete, so that practice staff have peace of mind that vulnerable patients have been contacted, and they can view patient responses to the interactive call questions.
The patient pack is available in the following languages: Arabic, Chinese (traditional), English, Gujurati, Gurmukhi, Urdu and Welsh.
The calls are available in the following languages: Arabic, Cantonese, English, Gujurati, Punjabi, Sylheti and Welsh.
The service works via an easy to use web-based interface which is hosted within the NHS network, provided by Medixine. No software is installed locally and all patients data are stored within the NHS network secure server.
If you would like to implement the service in your area or discuss it further, please complete our online form and one of our account managers will contact you.
This service has been well received by both patients and practice staff using the system. They have found that the service helps to keep patients well, more contented and avoids the stressful situation of repeated hospital admissions.
Read more about the solutions and benefits from Healthy Outlook® in our case studies from Primary Care Trusts who have used the Healthy Outlook service, or click through to our dedicated pages using the buttons to the right of this page.
Moray Community Health Partnership (PDF, 595 kB)
If you would like further information about Healthy Outlook®, or any of our other health forecasting services, please complete our online form.