An innovative group of NHS doctors have launched a new app which is set to revolutionize the way clinical staff communicate and help ease the current pressure on the health service.
The technology platform, Forward, is promising to free doctors from relying on an outdated system of pagers and landlines by replacing them with an app designed to support the complex communication needs of clinical teams
The app was founded by two junior doctors, Lydia Yarlott and Barney Gilbert, along with Philip Mundy, the mobile entrepreneur behind Goodlord and Beem, after becoming frustrated with the archaic systems used on NHS wards.
Deciding to take matters into their own hands, they set about creating a secure, compliant tech platform which enables clinical staff to easily contact each other, prioritize tasks and safely share patient information. They have since been joined by a team of five junior doctors to help scale the platform.
Dr Lydia Yarlott, commented:
As soon as I started working in hospitals, I was struck by how much time I was wasting trying to navigate switchboards or running around trying to respond to my pager. The inefficiency of the set-up was staggering. I had a powerful smartphone in my pocket, but was stuck using a 1960s-style communications network. My colleagues and I were wasting hours every day; time we could have been spending with patients.
After getting sick of the daily frustrations it was causing, my co-founders and I decided to find a solution. That’s how Forward was born. It’s a simple tool that can support the complex communication needs every clinical team has. You can instant message your team and easily contact others in the hospital without needing their mobile number. You can also prioritise tasks, manage workloads and share patient updates. Crucially, these communications are secure and subject to the highest levels of Data Protection, which is vital in our sector.
This is a solution built for doctors, by doctors and one which we believe could make a drastic difference to how much time we’re able to spend with patients. With many NHS wards at breaking point this winter, technology solutions like Forward are desperately needed.
The app, which is free to download for all NHS clinicians, has been taken up by 2,000 clinical staff across the UK. On average, the Forward team calculate that doctors and nurses using the app could save up to an hour of their time each day.
Unlike WhatsApp, an unsecure platform which many Doctors have started using in recent years, Forward is compliant with all NHS information governance requirements, and meets the confidentiality standards set by the GMC
The team behind the app are working doctors who are passionate about improving the healthcare system.