EU-funded programme to develop first best practice "menu" for coordinated care and telehealth deployment

April 29, 2013

Advancing Care Coordination and Telehealth Deployment programme to explore processes for bringing care into the home for the chronically ill, saving healthcare systems billions


London, UK  – Philips and its consortium partners, including NHS 24, Scotland, today announced the launch of the Advancing Care Coordination and Telehealth Deployment (ACT) programme1. The Philips-led ACT programme is the first programme  to explore the organizational and structural processes needed to successfully implement care coordination and telehealth (CC&TH) services on a large scale.


“The ACT programme is a key step towards the widespread use of care coordination and telehealth services. It takes research in this field to the next stage of implementation. The programme examines how best to deploy and integrate telehealth to improve outcomes for patients and healthcare systems, and ensure they are cost effective,” said Professor Stanton Newman of Health Psychology, School of Health Sciences, City University London, UK and Principal Investigator on the Whole System Demonstrator, the largest telehealth trial conducted to date.


The 5 regions involved in  the scheme are Scotland, Groningen in the Netherlands, Lombardy in Italy and Catalonia and the Basque Country in Spain. NHS 24, Scotland, as part of the EU-funded programme, will help create a menu selection of best practices by monitoring CC & TH initiatives which will facilitate the deployment of telehealth solutions more widely.

Professor George Crooks, Medical Director, NHS 24, said: “There are potential widespread benefits for Scotland from the knowledge generated from the ACT programme as it allows results from smaller telehealth and telecare projects to be scaled up to the next level. NHS 24 has a proven track record in the scaling up of telehealth and telecare initiatives and their integration into routine care services across Scotland.  As part of our involvement we will be examining other initiatives and enabling their deployment where appropriate.”

The ACT programme could potentially transform care for millions of chronically ill people and save healthcare systems billions each year. Chronic illness is growing to pandemic proportions. In the UK alone 15.42 million people are living with one or more long term conditions whilst 70% of the UK’s NHS budget is spent on treating long term diseases. Across the EU this problem is further intensified with 90 million people suffering from either heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or diabetes3. Each year, these three conditions cost EU healthcare systems around EUR 125 billion.

With CC&TH services, chronically ill people can be treated effectively in their own homes through remote management systems and integrated networks of caregivers. The ultimate goal of these services is to improve health and help patients help themselves by giving them more independence, freedom and control over their health and lifestyle. Clinical studies4-6 have shown these services can help reduce hospital admissions, days in hospital and mortality rates. However so far CC&TH has been mainly limited to pilot programmes due to the difficulty of translating such research into practice.


To do that, the ACT programme brings together healthcare authorities, companies, universities and hospitals. NHS 24, Scotland, as one of the five partner European regions, will deploy and operate its own CC&TH schemes for heart failure, COPD and diabetes patients. The systems will be monitored over a 24-month period to identify “best in class” processes, structures and ways of working. Data and experiences will be shared between regions and the resulting optimized structures and behaviours will be published, allowing other healthcare authorities to develop their own CC&TH systems.


“Philips aims to transform healthcare through meaningful, patient-centric innovation,” said Bas Verhoef, President Market Group EMEA, Philips Healthcare. “People increasingly want healthcare on their own terms, in ways that lets them get on with their normal lives. Moving care from the hospital to the home makes that possible while also helping healthcare systems cope with the increased pressures due to aging populations and the growth of chronic disease”.


“It is an essential evolution, but making it happen requires cooperation from across the healthcare value chain,” continues Verhoef. “The ACT programme shows there is a strong willingness to cooperate across Europe, and Philips is proud to lead such a strong consortium that is united in wanting to improve care and quality of life for millions.”


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[1] The ACT programme is part of the European Innovation Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing (EIP-AHA). The EIP-AHA is an initiative from the European Commission under its Innovation Union strategy, and aims to increase the average healthy lifespan by two years by 2020

[2] i)The National Archives, Department of Health

ii)Inside Government

[3]i)Braunschweig F, Cowie MR, Auricchio A. What are the costs of heart failure? Europace. 2011;13:ii13–ii17 ii)

[4] Inglis SC, Cark RA, McAlister FA, et al. Structured telephone support or telemonitoring programmes for patients with chronic heart failure. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010;8:CD007228

[5] Inglis SC, Clark RA, McAlister FA, Stewart S, Cleland JG. Which components of heart failure programmes are effective? A systematic review and meta-analysis of the outcomes of structured telephone support or telemonitoring as the primary component of chronic heart failure management in 8323 patients: Abridged Cochrane Review. Eur J Heart Fail 2011. Sep;13(9):1028-1040.

[6] BMJ 2012; 344 doi:

For further information

Please contact:

Barbara Neate

Philips Healthcare Communications

Tel: +44 (0) 1483 293 071



About Royal Philips Electronics

Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a diversified health and well-being company, focused on improving people’s lives through meaningful innovation in the areas of Healthcare, Consumer Lifestyle and Lighting. Headquartered in the Netherlands, Philips posted 2012 sales of EUR 24.8 billion and employs approximately 118,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. The company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare, energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications, as well as male shaving and grooming and oral healthcare. News from Philips is located at


About ACT
The ACT consortium includes:

  • Philips Healthcare Boeblingen, Germany
  • Philips Electronics Nederland B.V., The Netherlands
  • Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece
  • University of Hull, United Kingdom
  • City University London, United Kingdom
  • Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, United Kingdom
  • Consorci Institut d'Investigacions Biomèdiques August Pi i Sunyer, Spain
  • Universitätsklinikum Würzburg, Germany
  • UMC Groningen, The Netherlands
  • NHS 24, Scotland
  • Telbios, Italy
  • Asociacion Centro De Excelencia Internacional En Investigacion Sobre Cronicidad, Spain
  • Agencia D’informació, Avaluació I Qualitat En Salut, Spain
  • Servicio Vasco de Salud-Osakidetza, Spain


For more information, visit:


About NHS 24, Scotland

  • NHS 24 is Scotland’s national Telehealth and Telecare organisation, providing high quality, national services to people across Scotland through telephone, web, and other digital channels including TV and video conferencing.


  • NHS 24 works in close partnership with all Health Boards and the Scottish Ambulance Service to provide essential services to patients in need of urgent advice and care during the out-of-hours period when their GP surgery is closed.


  • NHS 24 employs a range of specialist clinical staff including call handlers, nurse advisors, pharmacists, mental health advisors, dental nurses and special phoneline advisors within Breathing Space.


  • NHS 24 provides access to trusted health information and support through a range of different services, including NHS inform, Care Information Scotland, and Smokeline. These services are available to the public via a range of different delivery channels, including the web, telephone and digital TV.


  • The Scottish Centre for Telehealth and Telecare is part of NHS 24 and leads the way in delivering innovative new technology-based services to the people of Scotland.