A partnership, co-designing new healthcare technology solutions with people who have epilepsy has just been announced between FutureNeuro, the Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) Research Centre for Chronic and Rare Neurological Diseases, hosted at RCSI, and Irish company S3 Connected Health.
The partnership will assess the barriers and enablers associated with eHealth adoption by collaborating with people who have epilepsy, their families and care-partners from a broad range of backgrounds and circumstances, as well as healthcare providers, managers and policy-makers. Understanding these barriers is the key to the adoption of new technology enabled solutions.
For patients with chronic conditions such as epilepsy, benefits include faster patient feedback about the effectiveness of new treatments; options to access to additional supports in relation to diet or exercise, and proactive support for self-management and medication adherence – the latter which poses a significant risk for people with chronic illness.
It could also allow people to complete routine appointments remotely, avoiding long travel distances, additional costs and resulting in less frequent but better consultant visits.
“The rise of the informed patient and the proper enablement of healthcare and wellness through technology are likely to be the greatest revolution in healthcare in the 21st Century. Physicians must move from being experts that care for patients to enablers that support patients to make decisions. Patients want a partnership with their doctor to use their expertise to help them react to and understand the technologies and to design ways they can work together to build solutions for monitoring both illness and wellbeing.”
Dr. Colin Doherty, Principal Investigator with FutureNeuro, Clinical Senior Lecturer in Neurology at Trinity College Dublin and National lead for women's health in Epilepsy
Through a better understanding of the role that technology can have in patient care, it will be possible to develop more personalised healthcare supports and solutions for people with epilepsy. By looking at the behavioural factors that impact patients and clinicians use of technology solutions, S3 Connected Health can tailor Affinial, its’ Digital Therapy Management and Patient Engagement platform, to create better care pathways for people with epilepsy.
“We are very excited about the holistic multi-disciplinary approach that is being used in FutureNeuro to better understand and treat neurological conditions. We believe eHealth solutions can play an important role in helping patients manage their condition and give clinicians a better insight into the patient experience of their condition outside of the clinicians’ office. The understanding gained in this program will provide a strong basis for the creation of digital therapy management and patient support solutions across a range of neurological conditions.”
Jim O’Donoghue, President, S3 Connected Health
“The SFI Research Centres bring together the best researchers in academia and companies across Ireland to work on strategic research programmes, with the primary objective of delivering significant economic and societal impact to Ireland. I am delighted to see this collaboration between FutureNeuro and S3 Connected Health, which through involving patients with epilepsy in designing their use of technological solutions that are more tailored to their needs, holds the potential to improve their quality of life significantly. Deeper involvement of patients with chronic illnesses in co designing the effective and efficient delivery of their treatment , represents a step forward in modern healthcare both in Ireland and globally ”
Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland and Chief Scientific Adviser to the Government of Ireland
FutureNeuro, which is funded by Science Foundation Ireland, aims to deliver advances in understanding disease initiation and progress. With this understanding, and through industry partnerships, new technologies and solutions for the treatment, diagnosis and monitoring of chronic and rare neurological diseases will be developed.