Screenshot of a telementoring session during surgery

Telementoring and Education

Medical education: 

The East Kent Urology (EKU) Department of EKHUFT has recently developed novel interfaces and successfully applied these for teleproctoring, telementoring, teletutoring and education. Consultant Robotic Surgeon Mr Sashi Kommu worked with the IT Team to develop a bespoke Intrinsic Live Streaming Telecast directly from the Robotic Surgeon’s Console into a secure network for remote telementoring and teletutoring. The platform was developed to deliver at a fraction of the cost of other systems which cost thousands of pounds. The team including Mr Ben Eddy (who has performed over a thousand robotic prostatectomies) recently successfully tutored a robot fellow in Australia (she was unable to start her fellowship due to the Pandemic).

The Intrinsic Live Stream has been utilized also for regular teaching medical students, junior doctors, international fellows and patients since September 2018. The unit has adapted this, during the current COVID-19 Pandemic, to webinars and virtual videoconferences offering participants two-way interactive communication during sessions.

Teleintraoperative consultation:

The Department also uses teleintraoperative consultation platforms which were created to permit senior highly experienced surgeons to live link and offer advice in the event that another more junior surgeon needs advice with complex unexpected situations. This was shown to improve surgical outcomes and is part of the department’s quality assurance programme.

Telementoring and Teleproctoring: 

Telementoring and teleproctoring services involve the remote presence of an urologist and serve as a mentor and/or proctor during a telesurgical procedure. This is used, at present, for educational purposes only where the department joins other centers to discuss rare cases and share knowledge and experiences with other centers of excellence.

Telesimulation and telesurgical rehearsal: 

The department has a simulation lab and conducts studies involved in minimally invasive skills acquisition and delivery. The unit has presented their findings in national and international conferences. There is approval and funding for a state of the art surgical and minimally invasive simulation suite in the Kent and Canterbury Hospital.