An update on proceedings since Kent participated in the Telehealth experiment, which sought to monitor people's health at home. And things to look out for during winter walks.
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Whatever happened to high-tech health care in the home?
It's a disaster for that family and the patient.
Someone now needs to step up and take ownership of this and say,
"I'm really sorry it has gone wrong, it was a trial, but
The veteran airmen on a mission for the Guinea Pig Club.
I hit the ground rather violently and this was an inferno.
And how to navigate your way through the winter months.
Winter is actually quite a fun time to do it.
We've got fewer leaves on the trees so we can look at some things
I'm Natalie Graham with untold stories closer to home,
from all around the south-east, this is Inside Out.
Hello and welcome to the programme, which this week comes
to you from a rather wet New Haven in East Sussex.
Now, no one likes staying in hospital if it can possibly be
avoided and a few years ago, the government backed
a new scheme called telehealth, designed to help people
Kent was at the forefront of that experiment,
Can you come and have a look a minute, please?
He's a former Lord Mayor of Canterbury.
When he was younger he ran marathons.
He was also a rugby player and boxer.
But these days he suffers multiple health problems.
He's covered in cuts and bruises from regular blackouts and falls.
He doesn't often move far from his armchair.
I got kicked in the head playing rugby and had two blood clots
on the brain and developed epilepsy from the heart.
I then had a couple of heart attacks and that followed
He fell unconscious while you are interviewing him and his wife.
I asked Betty how often that happens.
There are thousands of people like Pat in the south east -
in and out of hospital - with long-term conditions that put
But Kent was one of the first local authorities to
experiment with a high-tech solution - telehealth.
Telehealth is a system, first developed in America,
where patients use high-tech equipment at home to take
their own health readings, which can be monitored remotely.
What it allowed us to do was monitor patients on a daily basis
from our office or from where ever we were without having
The government was so enthusiaistic about telehealth that it launched
the Three Million Lives campaign, which aimed to get three
million people signed up to telehealth within five years.
And it apppinted Kent as a pathfinder authority,
because Kent had been operating a telehealth system since 2005.
So we are going to find out what happened to telehealth.
There were certainly high hopes back on.
We know that this saves money and improves lives.
We know it has fantastic potential benefits, reducing the number
of crisis admissions in hospital when everything goes
wrong, which happens to often at the moment.
But in the same year the NHS was reformed,
devolving power from large primary care trusts to smaller clinical
At the time, Roy Lilley, a former NHS trust chairman, sounded
He said it would only work on a large sale.
Because if you work as it is now, with a few local bits of kit that
get plugged in in some way or other to the local GP's surgery,
They were told to take Pat's vital readings every day,
to include blood pressure, blood sugars and oxygen levels.
These were relayed to a nursing team that monitored them remotely.
The whole system gave him a lot of confidence that
if he didn't feel well, put him on the machine
and he would know roughly what was wrong with him,
you know, whether it was the heart, the head or what.
Rather than being in hospital maybe three times a month,
it stretched it out to maybe once every three months and it made
To start with, Pat and Betty were very happy
It meant that despite Pat's severe health problems,
they felt they had the security that someone was watching.
But after a while, Pat and Betty noticed a change
in the telehalth service - to them it seemed the
If the readings that were going through to the listening station
were above or below his parameters, then somebody would
Or they'd ring me and say, 999, and then gradually this has gone
The visits have come down to the fact that
Betty became so concerned about the service that she started
Every month I took, I started taking a picture.
And were there are things that concerned you about his readings?
That you felt you should have got a phone call?
These are down in the threes, blood sugar.
Was Betty right to be concerned that she didn't get phone calls
from nurses when she thought perhaps she should have done?
We are not experts so we don't know, so I have taken some of those
readings and I am going to show them to somebody who might
Dr Lawrence is a GP and a reader in medicine at Warwick University.
He agreed to take a look at Betty's photographs.
We can see certainly as far as the BP is concerned
that there are times when it has been quite high and out
of a certain range, or quite low and I would expect
that there would be some kind of communication
What I'll do is I will ring Betty now and see if she did
I'm just looking at the BP readings from March of 2016.
Your husband's BP was around 105, 110 systolic.
If it is quite low, then it can reduce the flow of blood
to the brain and physiologically one will therefore feel dizzy
I would expect that you may have received a call at this time.
No, I haven't had any calls this year.
Dr Lawrence, what do you think about the fact that they didn't
So what has been happening with the Burke's telehealth service?
In 2013, the NHS was totally reformed.
Responsibility for telehealth switched from the Department
Kent County Council is no longer involved.
So with responsibility for telehealth now passed
on to the NHS, we contacted the Clinical Commissioning Group
We asked why Pat Burke didn't get calls from
the service in March last year and if the service has deteriorated.
The reply came from Kent community health NHS
Foundation Trust who run the service for South Kent coast CCG.
The Burkes told us that that's not the case and they hadn't
agreed that Pat should come off telehealth.
They also did not know about him being discharged. Betty said the
reason a nurse came out to see him in March is because she called the
service concerned about a bad cough he had at the time. We wanted to
know what had happened to tele- health. All be Kent CCG 's gave us a
joint statement. The Kent CCGs told us the telehealth
system has gone. They sent out letters to telehealth users but the
Burkes say they did not get the letter. Nothing has come to us. As
we heard earlier, Roy Lilley was sceptical four years ago about the
likely success of tele- health unless it's run on a big scale. He's
critical of way the bags have been treated. It's a disaster for the
reputation of tele- medicine and it's a disaster for the CCG and the
practice because they have to take over looking after these patients in
some other way. There is no failure regime when these things go wrong,
it was put in under the terms of being a trial. The trial has failed
now someone needs to step up and take ownership and say, I am sorry
it has gone wrong, but we will sort it out. I asked if there was any
prospect of the CCGs being able to prospect of the CCGs being able to
organise a telehealth system that organise a telehealth system that
works in the future. There are 212 telehealth CCGs in England. There
are far too many and they are far too small and they are occupied with
being avalanche with demand. Wherever tele- medicine was on the
list to do, it's hip to the bottom. It makes a life that I had vanished.
A way of life. It should not be taken away. It would be taken away.
I think that is wrong. While we were filming with Pat, he had an
epileptic fit which left him lying on the floor. In spite of his
long-term health problems, the Burkes want to stay in their own
home. They thought telehealth would be the answer, but at the moment, no
telehealth scheme is in place in Kent. Coming up: We bring you tips
on how to navigate your way through a winter wonderland. It's finding a
way using nature, the sun, the moon, the stars, even buildings.
Everything is a clue. He may be 95 years old but one that trend pilot
is on a final mission, to build a memorial to the airmen who are
seriously burned in the Second World War and to ensure we never forget
the members of the Guinea Pig Club. The 22nd of September was a very
important day of my life. By the end of the day, my life had changed. I
hit the ground violently and this was an inferno. I undid the straps,
the buckle, climbed over the starboard side of the aircraft and
fell to the ground and then I was unconscious again, woke up in
hospital. It was... Just a horrible feeling, like terror. You feel as if
you are going to die now. Where are you? I am up there. You
can tell from my hat. A trainee glider pilot
on a navigation exercise in Warwickshire when the plane's
engine stalled and it crashed. I was covered with aviation fuel and
I was on fire. I got horrid burns of my entire legs and my hands and my
face. He suffered 40% burns and in 1947,
was sent to a pioneering plastic I was referred to Archibald McIndoe.
He said I needed a further 14 operations, which gave me the face I
have now. McIndoe had been appointed
by the RAF to treat The Battle of Britain led to rising
numbers of young pilots By the end of the war, the majority
were from Bomber Command. McIndoe's patients became
known as his Guinea pigs because of the experimental plastic
surgery they had. He encouraged them to form
the so-called Guinea Pig By the end of the war,
it had 649 members. 75 years after the GPC was formed,
Sandy feels it's time the severely burned airmen should be given
a permanent tribute. With his wife Maggie,
they've come to see it taking shape at Graeme Mitcheson's
workshop in Leicestershire. You've got the drama. Yeah, quite
sharp flames here, thinning out to smoke at the top. It's catching that
drama of how the injuries were obtained. I commissioned this
memorial because if I hadn't done so, nobody else would. At East
Grinstead, Sir Archibald McIndoe needs 37 members of the day big
clubs. His hands have given new hands and faces to burned their men.
the Queen Victoria Hospital in East Grinstead.
It's still a leading centre for the treatment of burns injuries.
Welcome, gentlemen. Like Sandy, Roger Chaplin has also been treated
at East Grinstead. After crashing his private plane, he has had 70
operation so far. The guinea pig story gives him hope. It is quite an
inspiration. When you have a serious burn, you deal with the aftermath.
It is easy to get into a very low situation psychologically. To see
that they can come through that particular low and come out on the
other side and go out to have a decent and fulfilling life, it is
very uplifting. Sandy's mission to have a memorial is nearing
completion. He has managed to raise ?20,000 to pay for it. The edge
traces the profile of Archibald McIndoe's face. He is his face. His
hands touched me and now I am touching him. It doesn't half bring
back memories. The day of the back memories. The day of the
unveiling at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. The Duke
of Edinburgh became president of the Guinea Pig Club after McIndoe's
death. He is here to pay his respects alongside some of the loss
of bribing members of the club. It's very appropriate, I think. The
bottom bit and aircraft going down in flames. I am only a lightly
toasted one. It's overwhelming. Absolutely overwhelming. I think
he'd be slightly up at the extent to which 75 years after it was founded
and 56 years after his death that something of this nature can attract
such interest from around the world and nationally for something that
started in a little cottage hospital in Sussex all those years ago. I'm
very grateful to be able to live to see it on failed. I am glad I took
the initiative. Archibald McIndoe inspired Sandy to train as a doctor
after the war. He practised as a GP for 40 years. Now in his 90s, Sandy
has terminal cancer, but he has one more chance to fly in a Tiger Moth.
It just brings it all back. Yes. I wish I were young again.
Sandy has tracked the Himalayas, sailed the Atlantic and skied until
he was 82. He has led the full and active life that Archibald McIndoe
wanted his guinea pigs to lead. Now his final mission is complete. There
is a place where the injured their men will always be remembered.
It can't have escaped your notice that we are in the depths of winter,
but it's a good time to enjoy the great outdoors. As long as you know
how to find your way about. From its headlands to its beaches
and waterways, the South East of England is surely one of most
beautiful corners of the country. Perfect for a walk in
the crisp fresh air. But this is the time of year
where you probably want nothing more than to snuggle up indoors and see
out the cold weather and the long dark nights with a warm
drink and a good boxset. After all, in the dead of winter
you might think, quite reasonably, that there's nothing
of interest to see. The Natural Navigator,
AKA Tristan Gooley, is going to show me -
and my dog Boris - how to find our way around
the South East at this time of year, and why it's not so much bleak
mid-winter, it's more You are the natural navigator. Tell
me what that means. It's finding a week using nature. Using the sun,
moon, stars. We are going to go on a small adventure but first we need to
check the weather and see if there are clues to tell us what the
weather is going to be like today. Tristan has got me gazing up
to the skies to try to forecast the weather
by just using the clouds. It's a day of blue skies but not
perfect blue skies. Can you see these wispy, very high clouds? There
is a vertical ones, striped? Yes, they are tailing away and that can
be a sign that the weather is going to change. It is not a caste guy
cast-iron guarantee. -- cast-iron guarantee. It's a sign that says
don't assume is good weather will last forever. Let's make the most of
it. The one thing I lead in the guide is if you are lost in the
woods, look for the moss growing on the side of the tree and that will
take you which way is North. That is what everybody thinks, but Moss is
one of the most unreliable indicators. All it tells us is that
there is moisture. There is something here which makes a
fantastic compass. This gold colour here. It's a beautiful light can,
one of my favourites and it loves light. When it gets lots of
sunlight, it turns gold and we get most of our light from the South so
the more cold it gets, that tells us which way self is. -- old. One of
these birches, it's a good sign if you think you are lost because they
tend to grow at the outer edges of a woodland. It did not take me long to
notice some of the other clues for myself. Look, that is a colour
compass. Yes! Can you see just here we have got what looks like hair
lichen again and it loves fresh air lichen again and it loves fresh air
so it is telling us we are in our own little patch of wilderness.
Telling us the countryside is clean. It's fascinating getting to decipher
some of the secrets the natural world has to offer. Can you see the
lines in the sky there. Are they from planes? Yes, we didn't see any
of that earlier and suddenly we are seeing these lines spreading out and
staying out in the sky. It's not a good sign. It means the air is
getting moister which means they weather is probably turning. It's
the end of day one of our mini adventure and Boris and I have
enjoyed a woodland walk. Let's hope the weather holds for the next leg.
The following day the winter sun had been replaced by wind and rain.
Boris decided to take a rain check and stay in his basket by the fire
at home while Tristan and I hit Camber Sands. It's pretty cold and
windy today. At least we have the windy today. At least we have the
beach to ourselves. Yes, in amongst these doings, can you see how they
have been swept over by the wind and our prevailing wind comes from the
south-west so the south-west must be south-west so the south-west must be
out there somewhere. Let's see what the water is like. We have some
ripples here but they have flat tops and that's a sign the water has
flowed quickly one way and then quickly back the other way. But
actually the wonderful thing is this is a work of art and nobody will
ever see anything exactly the same as this ever again. It is lovely.
Shall we get an ice cream? We left the seaside and travelled to ride
but can you try your hand at natural navigation in a town? And if you
thought Tristan's use of lichen is a makeshift compass was inventive, you
nice compass up here I would like to nice compass up here I would like to
show you. This is it, your giant compass. Churches can be brilliant
compasses. The alignment, churches are online from west to east with
the altar at the eastern end. The auto traditionally would be in the
direction of the holy land. Tradition means the church would be
a line towards sunrise on the feast Day of the Saint that the churches
Church and I believe the day in Church and I believe the day in
question is August 15 and the sun rises north of East in August, so we
north of East. The graves face a north of East. The graves face a
certain direction because of the beliefs of those who are buried in
them. Gravestones will be at the Western end and the feet of the
person buried will be at the eastern end. On the day of judgment when the
dead shall rise, they should be facing the holy land. If you are
ever struggling to find your way in the centre of a town, find a church.
They will give you a good sense of direction. If you can pull yourself
away from your scented candles and socks, there is much to see at this
time of year. Let's not forget about using the church as a giant compass.
Surely this proves that we really do live in a winter wonderland.
For more information about the programme, you can go to our pages
on the BBC News website. You can watch the programme again on BBC
iPlayer. Next week: The fisher men who are abusing drugs in the English
Channel. That's what we have to live with, you have gone from being a
good fisherman, strong, great man to a druggie. An organ donors who have
their final wishes overruled. If someone has taken the time and
effort to express their wishes by carrying a donor card, no one should
have the right to overwrite that wish. That's all from us tonight.
Hello, I'm Riz Lateef with your 90-second update.
Overcrowded - the number of patients on wards in England have been
at unsafe levels in nine out of ten hospitals this winter.
A few years ago Kent was at the forefront of a Telehealth experiment to monitor people's health at home - so what's happened since? Has it kept people out of hospital? And the surprising things to look out for during winter walks in the south east countryside.