05 May UTI under lockdown: Same-day home test-and-treat service launched
Women with a suspected urinary tract infection (UTI) now have access to a clinical-grade test-and-treat service, developed by smartphone urine test pioneers, Healthy.io – all without leaving their home.
The newly launched Velieve service uses a smartphone camera to help diagnose UTIs in just minutes, with antibiotics – if needed – delivered to the door within hours, in a UK first.
Traditionally, women suffering from a UTI need to secure a GP appointment for treatment and if they are prescribed antibiotics, they need to pick the medication up from a pharmacist. Now, women suffering from the painful condition no longer need to leave their homes and risk exposure to COVID-19 for diagnosis and treatment.
With up to 10 million GP appointments a year in the UK, UTIs are one of the most common types of infection. A recent Public Health England survey found that 95% of women who have had a UTI said they needed to see a doctor and 74% had to take antibiotics to treat the painful condition.
In its initial London roll-out, the new Velieve testing kit can be ordered and delivered to any address across the capital within three hours, with courier services offered by Gophr. In partnership with Medicspot, an online clinician will review the dipstick results alongside the patient’s symptoms and if a UTI is diagnosed, antibiotic treatment can also be ordered and delivered within another three hours or collected from a pharmacy.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need among women for a safe, clinically appropriate way to test and treat UTIs from home, Healthy.io has developed this end to end solution and is offering the service at a significantly subsidised cost of £10.00 for the next 60 days. This includes the kit, delivery of the kit to the woman’s home within 3 hours, and the online GP consultation. If needed, the cost of antibiotics and delivery of the medication within 3 hours is an additional £15.00.
According to television presenter Cherry Healey: “We all know that feeling when you’re about to get a UTI and the symptoms that sneak up on you. I’m so pleased that the Velieve kit and service is available to women who can get the treatment they need as soon as they need it.”
“Not only is the test-and-treat kit helping to speed up the time it takes for women with a UTI to get treatment but it’s also helping us keep safe during these challenging times.”
London-based GP, Dr Nisa Aslam said: “There’s no doubt that for many women being able to test and treat a UTI at home will be really very convenient.”
“This is even more helpful during the COVID-19 pandemic when many women may be self-isolating or can’t or don’t want to go to see or phone their GP practice. They can carry out this test in the comfort of their own homes and get both the test and if needed, the antibiotic treatment delivered to them in a matter of hours.”
Katherine Ward, Chief Commercial Officer and Healthy.io’s UK Managing Director said: “Now, more than ever, there is an urgent need for home testing. That’s why we are thrilled to offer this service to women suffering from UTIs in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis and beyond.”
“Healthy.io has a strong history of providing women UTI test-and-treat services and working with retail and NHS partners to bring these products to as many women as possible. Now, Velieve can help women test and treat UTIs without leaving their homes and helps reduce the burden on an already-stretched NHS dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. Velieve is effective and safe as well as simple and easy to use, with results analysed by a remote clinician and a virtual nurse guiding women throughout the process. ”
Velieve is the second UTI test-and-treat service offered by Healthy.io. The company launched its pharmacy first test-and-treat service in 2019, which is available at 1,600 retail pharmacies across the UK.
Symptoms of a UTI include pain or a burning sensation when urinating, needing to urinate more often or suddenly, smelly or cloudy urine, blood in urine, lower stomach pain, feeling tired and unwell. If left untreated, a UTI can lead to long-term kidney damage.