Inpatient care and treatment - virtual capacity: interview findings

Virtual Capacity (VC) enables traditional inpatient care and treatment to be provided in alternative settings, often in people’s homes. This report which includes findings from interviews with pathway representatives and a rapid evidence review provides an understanding of how Virtual Capacity is operating in Scotland.


1. This section is not supposed to provide a nuanced understanding of the included terms, but instead to direct the reader on how they have been used in this report.

2. As systematic reviews were identified in the literature searches and included in this report, it is acknowledged that these will contain studies outwith the UK

3. These were conducted by the Scottish Government library serviec

4. Gratitude to Professor Brian McKinstry (The University of Edinburgh) for providing additional papers on telemonitoring.

5. This was not the case for Covid Remote Monitoring who were funded through the Scottish Government

6. This is where ‘the availability of good medical care tends to vary inversely with the need for it in the population served’ (Marmot, 2018:1)

7. Please note that it is not clear as to how ‘bed days saved’ have been defined within this survey

8. This was not specifically for older people.

9. No statistical significance is reported here and no control groups were included

10. Whilst the evaluation over a 27-year period was not specifically for older adults, the mean age of participants was 77.2 years and 79.2 years respectively for the two included services. As such the results have been included here.

11. The rest of Scotland excluded Fife, Lothian, and Tayside

12. Alexander (2021) and McKinstry et al. (2021) also report on clinician experience of the pathway, which – like that of patients – was positive. Understanding clinician experience across all the VC pathways could be a focus for future work.


Email: Arfan.Iqbal@Gov.Scot

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