Joining Florence

  • Who is Florence for?

    Florence is for the NHS in the UK. Florence is already being used in over 70 health and social care organisations; the number is increasing all the time. Florence has been designed to enable patients to increase their involvement in the management of their treatment, condition or lifestyle. Clinical staff use Florence to collect readings or symptom information remotely from patients in relation to their healthcare needs. In return Florence sends health advice based on the readings, as agreed with their clinician. Florence can also alert clinicians if a patient's condition worsens to allow them to intervene appropriately. Florence can also send reminders and health tips to support engagement and compliance with health or lifestyle advice.

  • How do patients get enrolled?

    Patients are enrolled by Clinical staff (usually their Doctor or Nurse) who will decide if the patient and their condition is suitable for Florence and, if so, will add the patient to the system.

    This is currently the only way for patients to enrol.

  • How much does Florence cost?

    There is a specific page on this website which covers the cost of Florence and how to get involved; you can find it here

  • What about Patients who don't have a mobile phone?

    Unfortunately for them Florence may not be the right choice however there is an increasing number of family members or carers who choose to send in readings on their behalf. Florence is primarily a Text Message based system. By using text messages we are capitalising on a very basic technology to make it available to the widest possible audience. Many patients have purchased basic mobile phones just to use Florence and this may be a route for you to explore.

Using Florence

  • How is Florence different?

    Traditional Telehealth requires dedicated communication equipment installed at a patient's home. Florence is different. From a patient's perspective they communicate with Florence through their standard mobile phone, all they need is text messaging. And because they use their mobile phone there is no expensive communication equipment involved. It’s cheaper for the NHS to operate and patients are not tied to their Home. As long as they have their mobile with them they can enjoy the benefits of Florence from anywhere they choose.

  • How do Clinicians interact with patients?

    Clinicians can log in via the website where they can add new patients and add services (e.g. Blood Glucose Monitoring, Heart Rate Monitoring) to new and existing patients. They can also see graphs of collected patient data, the base data and any messages sent to and from a patient.

  • What happens if a patient texts in too high/low readings?

    Florence has an optional notification and alerting system built in to each service. All the data ranges are customisable not only for each service type but also for each patient. A clinician can use either global parameters or customise the parameters against each patient. Alerts and notifications can be via email or text messages.

Information Governance

  • What if I have Information Governance Concerns?

    It’s vitally important Florence meets the requirements for Information Governance. Patient data is collected, stored and processed by the servers that run Florence. We have published a detailed section on Information Governance here with links to the Data Processing Agreement, Data Retention Policy, and Information Security Policy. In addition we assess ourselves against the NHS Information Governance Toolkit and operate a policy of operating systems and procedures that allow us to obtain a satisfactory grade year on year.

  • What about the IG Toolkit?

    We assess ourselves using the Commercial Third Party requirements of the NHS Information Governance Toolkit. Our assessment shows a current score of 76%, and grade of “Satisfactory”. Our Organisation code is 8J488, you can search for us here.

  • What about Caldicott Guidelines?

    We handle all personal data and ensure that confidentiality is not undermined. We have internally assessed all communications from Florence alongside the key principles of Caldicott to ensure that Florence is aligned with the guidance.

Legal Framework

  • What is the legal framework surrounding Florence?

    You can find the terms and conditions, data processing agreement, and information governance documents in this dedicated legal section.

  • Can we use alternative terms and conditions?

    We are sorry but, no. Florence is a very low cost Telehealth solution. Operating a low cost model means our only option is to standardise the product offering and the surrounding environment, this includes the legal structure. It’s simply not feasible to deal with variations to Terms and Conditions or alternate procurement documentation. We are happy to receive any recommendations you may have concerning the documentation with a view to inclusion in a later version of the standard. But in deciding if Florence is for your organisation you should make the decision on the current legal framework here.