Sheba’s Dr. Benjamin Boursi, a cancer specialist at the clinical oncology and radiotherapy department, has worked with Telesofia Medical to adapt its software to oncology patients. However, with some minor changes, the software can be made suitable for use by any patient with a chronic or acute illness that needs monitoring.
The tele-medicine software that enables patients to communicate with hospital doctors to deal with the side effects of chemotherapy at home.
The software will be offered to several hundred patients in the gastrointestinal oncology unit during the next few months. It is the basis of a new pilot program in the oncology department at Sheba Medical Center in Ramat Gan.
Headquartered in Israel and New York, Telesofia Medical is a developer of software that automatically generates curated educational videos for patients and medical staff.
The technology has the potential to support patients, reduce unnecessary medical complications and increase the efficacy and efficiency of treatment.
Dr. Boursi said, “There are all sorts of technologies to educate the patient.” But this one is unique because it personalizes the video, the educational and follow up aspect.
He added, “To my knowledge, this is the first of its kind program in the world.”
Patients who agree to use the software meet with their physician and get a video demonstration about the disease, the treatment protocol, and what needs to be done at home. It depends on patients that how they want to interact with their physician or nurse—by phone or by email.
It is not an app, so there is no need to download anything.
Boursi explained. “First we want to educate the patient about the disease and the treatment” and let them know what the steps ahead are. “But also, we want to follow up about both the physical and psychological side effects” of the treatment, he said.
He stated, “One of the biggest challenges for doctors is the absence of interaction with their patients in between visits”. And further added, “A lot of critical information about the patients’ welfare, especially if they are taking medications, can fall through the cracks until their next visit.”
Through the program, patients receive questions regarding how they feel and what the symptoms they are dealing with following chemo. This provides the doctor with knowledge about how the patient is interacting. If the side effects are standard, patient get a standardized response on how to deal with the symptoms. In case of unusual effects, the doctor gets flagged and can contact the patient and ask them to come in.