People suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are set to benefit from a new app launched by NHS Tayside, in partnership with Inhealthcare.
NHS Tayside is implementing the Irritable Bowel Syndrome Pathway from the Scottish Government’s new Modernising Patient Pathways Programme.
People are diagnosed within primary care and referred to NHS dietitians who then register them onto the new service. They are able to access trusted information at any time to help them understand and manage their condition.
It helps people to track their symptoms over time and identify any changes. They can request extra support from dietitians via the app as and when needed.
The new service reduces the time taken for people to start receiving specialist advice and support from weeks to days.
If they have not shown any signs of improvement after four weeks on the service, they can request further support from the dietitian and move onto the next stage in the management pathway.
The new app has been funded by the Scottish Government’s Technology Enabled Care Programme and the Modernising Patient Pathways Programme.
IBS is a chronic condition often associated with abdominal pain and discomfort and changes in bowel habits. IBS is thought to affect up to one in five people and is most common among women and those aged under 50. The symptoms associated with IBS can have a significant impact on a person’s daily life.
Tayside Nutrition Managed Clinical Network Programme Manager and Professional Dietetic Advisor to the Scottish Government Modernising Patient Pathways Programme, Jacqueline Walker, said, “IBS is a complex condition with many contributing factors, which can include diet, stress and anxiety.
“We launched this service with Inhealthcare to strengthen self-management, deliver care closer to home and speed up access to clinicians for those with the greatest need.”
Nicola Hutchinson, Advanced Practice Dietitian and Project Lead said, “We are hoping that our patients see the benefits of this new app very quickly.
“It is important to provide trusted evidenced-based advice to people as there is a lot of misinformation about IBS on the internet.”
Georgia Nelson, Regional Sales Manager at Inhealthcare, said: “This new service is built around the needs of people with IBS so they can access help and support at a time convenient to them.
“This empowers individuals as they come to terms with their condition and frees up clinicians to spend time with people who need the most care.”
“The first cohort of people with IBS have been given access to the app. It is hoped the service will be rolled out more widely in the coming months.”