VIDEO consultations look set to be a permanent fixture for patients being treated by the Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust.

Remote appointments have been introduced at the Trust to ensure safety during the Covid-19 pandemic and look to be a key part of treatment as the NHS adapts to restoring vital services post-coronavirus.

The Trust, which runs Russells Hall Hospital, was the first in the Black Country to use the technology, called Attend Anywhere.

The software is now being used by 34 services across the Trust including by midwives and rehabilitation services and is used for patients who need a consultation but do not need to physically attend a hospital.

Diane Wake, chief executive of the Trust said: “Our video consultation system Attend Anywhere has proved invaluable for patients to be able to get the consultations they require when it is not necessary for them to physically be at one of our sites.

“As we move towards restoring all our services, we are looking at how to reimagine and re-energise what we do to provide the best possible healthcare for the people of Dudley and beyond.

"Attend Anywhere will play a part in this and we are sure patients will embrace this opportunity which will cut the need to attend for many routine appointments.”

The Trauma and Orthopaedics was one of the first departments to use the technology and has proved to be more popular than expected.

Dr Gail Parsons, nurse consultant, said: “Attend Anywhere is definitely something we have embraced and see as an essential addition to what we do.

“One example is a patient who needed me to assess her incision after a hip replacement. She was able to show me the wound on her smartphone and I was able to reassure her that everything was normal with it. I was also able to check on the generalised swelling in her leg compared to the other.

“While this will not be suitable for everyone, our expectations about who would be able to use this service have been wrong. One of my colleagues needed to do a post-op review on a patient in their mid 90s and her husband asked for a video consultation!”