Cutting the MSK misery and burden


Feb 28, 2017


A unique new partnership between babylon and HCML is set to ease the pain of back, neck and muscle problems which strip 31 million working days from the UK economy.

The UK’s most popular digital healthcare service, babylon, has partnered with HCML, the leading rehabilitation service provider, to offer UK employers an integrated musculoskeletal (MSK) employee service.

Through it staff can get instant healthcare access without needing to take days off for medical appointments, including a speedy GP diagnosis. Specialist case management support means injured staff start on the correct treatment plan faster and get the best help to recover.

“With GP appointments in short supply, too many people soldier on at work, increasing the risk of more muscle damage and a longer recovery period”, said Dr Umang Patel, babylon’s clinical director. “Proactive intervention using digital health services significantly cuts risks”.

Its service lets staff act quickly on MSK concerns by getting accurate medical advice instantly, and by consulting with leading medical professionals in minutes through secure video consultations.

Clinical information is analysed quickly using proprietary, award winning technology to help users at any time, anywhere in the world.

Injured staff get a targeted clinical approach to ensure the best recovery and return to work outcomes. HCML, case management specialists, create clinically robust treatment plans to maximise and accelerate recovery, while helping to control costs. Its case managers identify the most beneficial course of action, and then provide a detailed handover to one of the UK’s largest clinically managed networks of MSK treatment providers.

Healthy staff can safeguard their health through a monitoring system which records health metrics and takes data feeds from health wearable products or integrated apps. The analysed data offers suggested preventative measures.

“This new service can change lives by giving staff the best digital and physical healthcare, helping from first symptom through to full rehabilitation”, said Patel. “Continuous support and timely interventions guarantee the best outcomes. Employers get more productive staff and higher engagement from a service that is not limited by location or beholden to local healthcare pressures or physiotherapy shortages. They get cost savings from fewer lost working days and better insurance premium controls – crucial when 30 per cent of corporate PMI claims are MSK-linked.

“Lower back pain causes misery to millions of UK workers. Early intervention and case management really alleviate it, improving quality of life, productivity and profitability and is proven to improve outcomes with MSK conditions.”

HCML CEO Keith Bushnell said: “We know from our experience of providing a stepped-care model of MSK clinical care at high volume that case management promotes rapid and appropriate care, resulting in significant cost-containment by reducing unnecessary interventions and consultations.

“Our approach facilitates speedier return to functionality and work by ensuring that the right care is provided by the highest quality network of clinicians who are constantly quality assured. Now we can start the full rehabilitation process earlier to return more people to pre-injury condition.”

babylon is the UK’s leading digital healthcare service. Its purpose is to democratise healthcare by putting an accessible and affordable health service into the hands of every person on earth. In order to achieve this the company is bringing together one of the largest teams of scientists, clinicians, mathematicians and engineers to focus on combining the ever growing computing power of machines with the best medical expertise of humans to create a comprehensive, immediate and personalised health service and make it universally available.

Launched in February 2015, the service now covers 300,000 people and sees between 500 and a thousand new patients joining every day. It has already expanded into Europe and has launched in Africa, with unpresented download rates in Rwanda. Over 100 businesses, including Citigroup, BNY Mellon, LinkedIn and leading employee benefits and health insurance providers have partnered with babylon to offer its services to UK employees. Further, the company is at an early stage of partnering with the NHS to make its services available to the broader UK population. babylon has received wide industry recognition for its innovative product and services, including featuring in Apple’s list of the best apps in 2015. It has also received several industry awards to date including ‘Mobile App of the Year’ at the UK IT Industry Awards and a Lovie award for ‘Health & Fitness.”