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Only the best health and care apps for residents in West Lancashire

2nd March 2018

NHS West Lancashire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is the first CCG in the country to launch their own website aimed at helping residents to find the best health and care apps to keep them healthy this winter.

https://westlancs.orcha.co.uk/, which is supported by Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria and provided by the Organisation for the Review of Care and Health Apps (ORCHA) – gives residents access to a range of health apps that have received impartial reviews considering such priorities as user experience, clinical effectiveness, and data security.Using the site is as simple as typing in a keyword such as ‘stress’, ‘sleep’ – or even ‘diabetes’ or ‘asthma’ – then choose from the best rated apps for you.

The website is available free of charge to anyone looking to download and use the best apps to manage their health and can even be used by health and care professionals wanting to recommend specific apps via text/email to support their patients.

Although ORCHA is now being used across the country, West Lancashire, working in partnership with Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria, can lay claim to be the very first area to use this revolutionary new website/app, having launched in October 2017. In West Lancashire the website is specifically targeting apps that focus on respiratory conditions, mental health and diabetes, as these are considered some of the key health priorities in West Lancashire.

Dr John Caine, a GP in West Lancashire and chair at NHS West Lancashire CCG, said:

“The CCG is delighted to be able to claim to be the first CCG in the country to deliver the ORCHA website and app to our residents.

“Health and care apps can offer a huge benefit to patients, really empowering them to manage and improve their health. However, with so much choice it is often difficult to know which apps to choose.

“ORCHA have really helped to assist our patients to understand which apps are the best and most trustworthy.

Dr Amanda Thornton, digital health & activation clinical lead for Healthier Lancashire & South Cumbria Change Programme said:

“This is hugely exciting for the people of Lancashire and South Cumbria as well as the health and care professionals who support them, for whom this is a win-win.

“Assured by ORCHA’s review process and the new highest rated apps in key priority areas we can engage with all of our clinicians, encouraging them to ‘prescribe a health app’ where appropriate.”

If you are a health and/or social care organisation within West Lancashire and would like to learn more about how to use the ORCHA website, specifically how to recommend apps to your patients, please contact wlccg.myview@nhs.net.

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