Florence healthcare messaging service delivers self-care educational videos

Florence healthcare


“Florence” or “Flo” as her patients call her is an intuitive and accessible NHS owned and developed tool who has provided support and advice to over 33,000 patients to date to manage their own condition in between clinical contacts across the UK. Flo combines the expertise of a healthcare team and the convenience of a mobile phone via her closed loop messaging persona using safe, proven, familiar techniques and methods to help patients engage with, and adhere better to, shared clinical management plans between clinician contacts offering clinically approved prompts and advice for the patient to act on depending on their condition.


Lisa Taylor, Head of Services and Community at Simple Shared Healthcare Ltd. (www.simple.uk.net), a not for profit licensed NHS members organisation, providing education, coaching and support to increase members capabilities to innovate with the NHS’s Simple Telehealth and related technologies including ‘Florence’ for the benefit of patients, felt that the targeted use of short videos could complement Florence in supporting patients to self manage.

Lisa suggested that the use of video in this way may compliment the innovative strategy of the Nottinghamshire Assistive Technology Team (NATT), hosted by Mansfield and Ashfield CCG and that the team may like to to lead on a trial local level project to understand more around how video can further enhance Flo’s unique psychology, methods and techniques to enhance the delivery of supported shared management digitally.

The NATT team, led by Sian Clark, Assistive Technology Innovation & Operational Manager and Dr Nigel Marshall as Clinical Executive have delivered 3 successful Business Cases since its inception in April 2012 with it becoming an operational mainstreamed service from April 2015, supporting existing and further deployment of Flo Simple Telehealth across the 6 Nottinghamshire CCGs and all commissioned provider services. They have the most, and diverse, number of Flo users, as well as a proactive mindset, making them a good choice to lead on the trial.


As longstanding users, discussions were had with Sian at NATT about the usage of the Flo system and which videos would work most effectively within it, covering 3 different areas: primary care, community care and acute services.

Hypertension and heart failure were identified as areas in which video could have the most impact.

Plans for the trial were then sent out to existing Flo service users in Nottinghamshire to ascertain their interest in participating, which resulted in 4 surgeries, 3 community teams and 2 hospital teams coming on board.


One of Health and Care Videos existing videos ‘How to use blood pressure machine’ was adapted to show the patient how to use the machine and the best way to take blood pressure.

There is also a video ‘Looking after your family’ inc. subtitled version plus 5 videos covering ‘Managing heart failure’ which can be viewed here:

‘When a patient is diagnosed with blood pressure issues, it can take time to explain how to use machine and take blood pressure as well as monitor and evaluate blood pressure levels on a regular basis. The ability to use links to demo and support videos via Flo’s interactions with patients has the potential to allow the time that nurses and HCAs spend with participating patients to become more efficient, proving a huge benefit to practices and services’ Sian comments.


Sian plans to go to those involved in the trial to show them exactly how the videos will be used, make sure they work on the individual websites (view the Blood Pressure video live on Oakwood Surgery’s website), and in some cases assist with displaying video on waiting room screens for further exposure.

Preliminary evaluation will take place within the first 3 months of going live with the project with initial evidence gathered from the number of number of video views, feedback forms and direct contact with patients using Flo messaging.


‘HCV have introduced for us an additional resource to support and educate patients. The videos will be integrated into our pathways utilising Flo Simple Telehealth and the process has been very quick. I look forward to evaluating the impact and working further with HCV’.  Sian Clark, Assistive Technology Innovation & Operational Manager, Mansfield and Ashfield CCG