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Paediatric virtual ward

About us

Paediatric virtual wards: New Service

This exciting and innovative new service will allow the Paediatric team to remotely monitor a select group of babies, children and young people, with an appropriate diagnosis, from the comfort of their own home.

The virtual ward will be utilised for:

  • Babies, children, young people who are deemed ready to step down from high dependency care. These patients will be supported in going home in a more timely manner
  • Children and young people who would normally require admission for common respiratory conditions. Community respiratory physiotherapists will work closely with parents and carers

The aim is to reduce time spend in hospital for families who are severely impacted each year by inpatient stays.

We are pleased to be one of the first Paediatric Units in the country to launch a service of this kind and look forward to supporting our patients and their families to remain at home as long as it is safe to do so.

Our new Paediatric virtual wards will:

  • Allow the Paediatric team to remotely monitor select patients, from the comfort of their own home
  • Shorten families’ long-term stays

We are pleased to be part of the new national initiative to move to a virtual ward model and look forward to supporting our patients and their families.

Meet the team

Paediatrics virtual ward team: Ali, Olivia, and Helen

  • Olivia Zielinska – CAU/Virtual Ward Manager
  • Helen Lindsay-Clarke – Paediatric Matron
  • Alison Shipp – Specialist Paediatric Physiotherapist

Our service

How patients are referred

2 pathways ‘Step-up’ – referred by Community Physiotherapists, ‘Step-down’ referred by ward Consultant

Parent/carers will be given a monitoring device to take observations on their child or young person on a 4-hourly basis. They will receive education and training before they leave the unit from the nursing staff and criteria for discharge. They will be given a second device to input those observations and a series of questions will be asked which will be fed back to the ward team. The patient will hopefully be discharged without having to return to the unit. Or if there are any concerns they will have Open Access to the unit to allow the parent/carer to bring their child back to the unit for assessment.

Patients will only be stepped up or transferred onto VW with the consent and support of the parent/carer/child or young person. There is a maximum time of 72 hours on the unit before the child may need reassessment. The ‘Step-Up’ pathway may require a short visit to the ward for assessment to ensure they are safe to remain on the pathway.