The value of video: how NHSX is facilitating an innovative solution to alleviate pressures on clinicians

Natasha Phillips

The current response to COVID-19 has placed unprecedented pressures on already stretched health and care services. Nurses and other clinicians are also having to adapt to new ways of working to protect patients and staff. My colleague Tara Donnelly recently wrote about how innovative ways of delivering patient care, without the need for travel to a face-to-face appointment, are becoming the norm. Increasingly, patients and clinicians are adapting to more of the patient journey taking place at home. 

Throughout the pandemic NHSX has been driving the delivery of digital solutions to alleviate pressures on clinicians and facilitate safer ways of delivering patient care. We’ve also seen innovators across the country making generous offers of digital products and services to support health and care systems, and we’ve been working to match those solutions to the needs of patients and staff.

Patient Videos

One such innovative solution is the use of videos for patient information. At this time when patients are experiencing more remote interactions with health and care staff, patient information videos can be a useful tool to reinforce important information. They can help by:

  • supporting patients with the self-management of conditions, reducing the number of appointments needed.

  • preparing patients for remote or face-to-face consultations so that more time during the appointment can be spent on treatment and care.

  • facilitating rehabilitation and recovery with fewer follow-up appointments.

Patients can easily be signposted to videos via digital communications, reducing the need for letters and leaflets. 

These are tools that can be used to  reinforce the vital education role that nurses play every day with patients, acting as a tool for information sharing as well as supporting a conversation with the patient about their condition.

Health and care videos available to NHS clinicians free of charge

As part of our response to COVID-19, NHSX has secured a national licence for NHS clinicians to access a library of over 600 health and care videos free of charge. The videos have been written by NHS clinicians and developed to work within care pathways. They have been professionally produced by Health and Care Innovations (HCI) for use by patients and have been independently, clinically assured by various NHS trusts. 

To support the use of the videos and video library, HCI have set up an online Resource Hub that provides guidance on how to share and use the videos in clinical specialties and pathways, to reduce demand as much as possible and to provide support to patients.  

Over the coming weeks HCI will be hosting a series of webinars which will provide an introduction to the video library and information to enable staff to maximise the use of videos right across the health system. I would encourage you to participate in these in order to think about how you can best use this free resource in your daily practice.