Connect Health rolls out new AI-enabled triage tool


PhysioNow improves access to healthcare and creates more-efficient pathways for musculoskeletal services

Connect Health and EQL have teamed up to create bespoke pathway identification for its patients

Connect Health and EQL have teamed up to create bespoke pathway identification for its patients

Connect Health, the UK’s largest independent provider of integrated community musculoskeletal (MSK) services has teamed up with EQL, part of the NHS DigitalHealth.London accelerator programme, to enhance PhysioNow, an AI-enabled triage tool based on Phio which facilitates bespoke care pathway identification for its patients.

In a move designed to improve patient access, reduce appointment waiting times, and meet increased demand through innovative and efficient pathways; Connect Health has introduced this additional digital channel as it continues to invest resources into ground-breaking AI technologies in order to improve accessibility and patient choice.

PhysioNow, a tailored version of EQL’s app, Phio, is an AI-enabled triage application that provides support and self management when appropriate while also ensuring patients get the right treatment, in the right place at the right time.

With tailored clinical content, PhysioNow uses powerful decision trees to accurately evaluate the right treatment pathway.

Compared with other tools on the market, which may only contain up to 10 questions, this tool has the intelligence to adapt to more than 3,000 scenarios.

Connect Health and EQL have together developed and tested PhysioNow with senior clinical input to ensure safety, accuracy of decision making, clinical quality and effectiveness.

Such input and partnership mean that within the field of MSK physiotherapy, the version of Phio launched by Connect Health represents the most-advanced and comprehensive on the market.

The PhysioNow app helps to evaluate the correct MSK treatment pathway

The PhysioNow app helps to evaluate the correct MSK treatment pathway

Launching in three NHS services initially, prior to rolling out to 20-plus NHS services and multiple occupational health physiotherapy contracts across the country; the tool will ensure Connect Health’s MSK patients have access to health services 24/7 allowing them to receive immediate support and advice.

Mike Turner, chief operating officer at Connect Heath, said: “We have consistently been at the forefront of innovation and are committed to using smart technology to reduce inefficiencies in the system and improve outcomes for patients, health partners, customers and colleagues.

“PhysioNow puts patients in the driving seat, empowering them with tools to take ownership of their health.”

Jason Ward, chief executive of EQL, added: “EQL’s mission of delivering user-centric, clinically-robust digital healthcare that is accessible to all is a perfect fit for the overstretched and under-resourced NHS.

“It proves that great technology can benefit all parties and break down traditional barriers. We are pleased that Connect Health will be joining our growing number of partners which include clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), global insurance companies, and occupational health providers.”

The app includes sophisticated algorithms which guide users to the appropriate pathway: urgent care for those presenting with ‘red flag’ symptoms; face-to-face care for those not suited for self-management; and other tools for those presenting with low-grade injuries.

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This ‘decision tree’ is underpinned by the latest clinical frameworks and is closely monitored alongside the collection of vital lifestyle data.