IMImobile acquires Healthcare Communications
Global cloud communications software and solutions provider IMImobile has announced its decision to acquire patient communication services provider Healthcare Communications. The decision will see IMImobile further develop essential digital tools to support and engage with patients.
With rising healthcare costs, the National Health Service is looking at implementing new, innovative technologies to further support the delivery of exceptional patient care.
Healthcare Communications is responsible for the implementation and pioneering of SMS text appointment reminder services in the UK, and has strong partnerships with 140 NHS organisations, delivering more than 100mn secure patient communications a year via SMS, IVM, telephone and email. This is in addition to postal and portal communications channels. More than 4,000 staff use the company’s messaging services daily.
Whilst UK Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has revealed that the number of missed appointments remains high, costing the UK over £700mn per annum, the implementation of SMS technology has seen the number of DNA’s fall by up to 25% in some areas. The acquisition will therefore support the UK’s ambitions to deliver cost savings across the UK healthcare industry.
“We are delighted with the acquisition of Healthcare Communications. This will allow us to extend our cloud communications technology and solutions to support the public services and healthcare sector,” commented Jay Patel, Chief Executive Officer at IMImobile.
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“The use of data and digital communication technology has the power to transform patient communication and support whilst driving greater operational efficiencies. We look forward to working with the Healthcare Communication team to take advantage of the close synergies bringing new services to the UK healthcare market.”
Headquartered in London, with offices in Hyderabad, Atlanta, Dubai and Johannesburg, IMImobile has over 1,000 employees worldwide, where its smart, digital customer engagement solutions are also implemented via Vodafone, Telefonica, France Telecom, Centrica, government agencies and several major financial institutions.
“We are very excited to become a part of the IMImobile Group, who are a well-established global leader of customer engagement communication solutions to leading enterprises worldwide,” added Mike Cunningham, Managing Director at Healthcare Communications.
“It will significantly accelerate our ability to invest in our products and services to support NHS England with its digital transformation agenda.”
NHS care homes are better than private, report finds
A new survey has found that 60% of people with parents in NHS care homes believe the quality of care has improved, compared to just 49% of respondents with parents in private care facilities.
The survey was conducted by Kepler Vision Technologies, an AI-driven company formed at the University of Amsterdam. It was carried out among UK adults with parents over the age of 75.
Respondents cited more capable care staff and better monitoring systems as being the main reasons for improvement.
However those who do not have parents in assisted living facilities had a different viewpoint - in this case only 35% of respondents believe that NHS facilities are improving, compared to 32% who believe it is only improving in the private sector.
Only 18% of people whose parents live with them or independently believe care home staff are able to look after residents to a good standard.
Kepler Vision say this difference in opinion is due to perceived budget cuts and financial pressures, with 67% of people commenting that a lack of funding has had a negative effect on care in both NHS and private care facilities.
Other key findings of the survey include:
* Out of those who say quality has declined in care homes, 69% say the NHS is dealing with budget cuts and increased financial pressure, while 65% also said that the private system is dealing with these pressures too
* 55% said that they or their parent have money saved specifically to pay for their future care
* 35% said the idea of their parent in a care home makes them feel frightened, although 32% say it makes them feel secure
* 52% are worried about their parent catching COVID
* 47% are worried about their parent being lonely
* 46% are concerned they could fall over alone
The announcement of this research follows the UK government's decision to delay presenting its social care budget till the autumn.
Commenting on the research, Dr Harro Stokman, CEO of Kepler Vision Technologies said: “While it is good to see that people recognise the importance of staff and face-to-face interaction in elderly care, the huge gap in opinion between those with parents in care and those without shows that there are unfair negative perceptions around the residential care space.
"More can and should be done by care homes to give people the confidence that their relatives will receive the very best care - by highlighting the excellent work of staff and how well they are able to monitor resident’s needs with easy-to-use technology.”